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Okay, now this is hilarious and absolutely off-the-wall “WTF”: Crowfall Executive Producer Gordon Walton says, “NGE was my fault.”

Having read that post this morning I just laughed. Summary: “Hey guys NGE is my fault because I proposed a game that wasn’t made that was like totally awesome and it didn’t happen but they messed up SWG instead so like my game idea that was awesome totally means I came up with the idea that made them ruin SWG.”

I don’t know which is better – his attempt at falling on his own sword for attention or the comments that follow in that post. The “+1 for standing tall” and “thank you for the closure” replies made me spill my morning Diet Coke.

Seriously, my intention here is not to be a complete ass, but does it get any better than this? Drumming up the SWG community, telling us about a game that wasn’t made, showing us how great you are for being insubordinate when your idea wasn’t chosen, then falling on your sword using hindsight data… really?

Let’s see if I can come up with a line as good as his… okay, I think I got it. ::Puts on his flame-retardant gear:: Here we go…  NGE wasn’t your fault, Gordon. Crowfall will be.  ::bows::

  • Tons of people blamed him for the NGE, as he was the exec producer at the time, and are still incredibly bitter about it. He’s trying to get a new MMO off the ground, and he wants those people on his side. They’re his target audience, as Crowfall is a similar sandbox style MMO. He has an agenda but that doesn’t mean he’s lying or necessarily disingenuous.

  • @Rodalpho: His reasoning for why people should blame him is what I find ridiculous. It’s quite the spin, and an attention grab. I’m interested in how he has or will spin SWTOR.

  • Okay, where was this two weeks ago when he could have used that press to push the initial Crowfall Kickstarter campaign past the $2 million mark? Missed opportunity. Not that Crowfall doesn’t still need press, but the classic Kickstarter campaign timeline generally puts this sort of sensational press coverage in week 2-3, when attention and fresh pledges are flagging.

  • This isn’t sensational enough to have pushed the Kickstarter much further, but it’s certainly an attempt to revive the presses as they most likely move into a push for “website pledges” or whatever they’ll choose to call them. The people fawning over the story are the same people who pledged already. Those are what I call ‘lost souls’ and aren’t in the equation anymore. The intelligent consumers who were around in the days when any of this was actually happening won’t be fooled by it, or shouldn’t be fooled by it, being used to downplay and/or manipulate people into following him a third time off a cliff. He’s shooting for the consumers who are on the fence, and this pushed me the other way.

  • I dunno, the post seemed pretty clear to me. He had an idea for an additional star wars game, the suits saw it and thought it would work for SWG too, and they forced the team to do it. So it wasn’t exclusively his fault, but he did plant the seed, and he was executive producer at the time.

  • Maybe because I never played SWG and don’t have any emotional attachment to it, but I fail to see the issue with Walton’s post. He admitted dropping the ball on several points and he’s sorry about it. That’s what I’ve read in his post, not much else. It illustrates what can happen in several industries when there’s a disconnect between the people working on the product and the executives.

    The link with Crowfall is rather thin. The only thing I can come up is some players raised public worries about Walton being on the project, which didn’t prevent them to pledge money it seems, Walton felt the need to tell his side of the story. It doesn’t mean anything for the Crowfall product though, the same situation can still happen or not.

  • Maljjin: What didn’t come across is just how monumentally epically hugely monstrously PISSED-OFF SWG players were by this change. It was widely heralded as the worst MMO change ever, and holds that award to this day, even after all the newer MMOs went pay2win. They destroyed the game >100k people were playing.

    Those 100k+ people were just _incredibly_ irate. Enraged.

    It’s challenging to explain just how bad this was to someone who didn’t play SWG.

  • He had an idea for a different game, it was rejected by the business side, and in a response to WoW releasing SWG was changed. Was it changed because he pitched an idea for a different game? Not even a chance. NGE was SOE’s reaction to World of Warcraft, not Gordon Walton’s idea fora game that didn’t happen. Did they use a few ideas Walton presented? Maybe.

    His story about his game being used for evil and his courageous stance that led to his termination is a red herring. Using said tale to alter people’s perception of you and support your new game… Falling for that would be silly.

  • It all comes down to whether you think he’s lying. Maybe the other side of the story will come out when Smed leaves Daybreak in a year and a day. Otherwise we’ll never know.

  • I agree that, after reading his whole post, it was a little weird that he is trying to take the blame for something he refused to move forward with because he knew it was a bad move. If anything, his refusal shows that he *fought* the NGE rather than brought it on.

    Seriously though, this is pretty rude and more than a little off-base: “showing us how great you are for being insubordinate when your idea wasn’t chosen.” He wasn’t insubordinate because his idea wasn’t chosen. He was insubordinate because he knew the idea was bad for the game. You, I hope, would have been too, regardless of whether or not your game idea was too expensive to fund (which was the main reason his game couldn’t be moved forward on.

    A little kindness goes a long way.

  • @Jemma: “He wasn’t insubordinate because his idea wasn’t chosen. He was insubordinate because he knew the idea was bad for the game.” So he says. 😉 Given his spin on NGE being a result of his proposal for a new game rather than a reaction to WoW, I’ve chosen to spin it this way.

    It’s not a lack of kindness on my part. I’m just being blunt (and admittedly a little bit of an ass because I’m tired of the spin). Look at the track record then look at the tales being told. None of it makes sense to me.

  • I swear we already had a discussion on here about why Crowfall is going to be terrible… But I do so love to read about how they destroyed a great sandbox game.

    If only those lessons were actually learned back then.

  • @rodalpho I swear if we scrolled back a few months I said Smed had 12.5 months, or maybe it was 13 months, but I think you nailed it.

    When I started playing these games, it was totally free and on a roll of paper that the modem (phone In cradle included) spit out. Fast forward a few years and it was a combo of bbs and shareware, and in hindsight all those games sucked compared to what was to come.

    I think kickstarter is basically shareware with payment in advance. It’s going to take a company willing to gamble and invest their own fund, and charge a fee, to get out of it.

    Maybe that will be Smed after the 9 or 10 months he has left. I’m sure he’s smart snuff to float his resume right?

  • @Rodalpho
    Well, that’s more or less what I was trying to say. His post does nothing for non-SWG players, it’s just a sad story about a major screw up. Different times, different people, different company. I can’t say the past will be repeated, so there’s not much value in the message for me. Maybe he’s trying to be honest, maybe he’s trying to show he’s not the sole soul to blame. I feel like he’s mostly trying to play politics, something I see on a daily basis in the company I work for, I mean there’s a whole layer or two of people whose sole jobs is playing politics, so I’ve kinda learn to ignore the noise.

    On the other side of the coin, I don’t think the message is very relevant to former SWG player either. People that were pissed off know the major names involved in NGE and I’m pretty sure they would avoid them as much as possible. If a former SWG player has backed Crowfall knowing Walton is in the project, it’s already a step in the forginess process.

    On second thougths, I starting to believe the guy is kicking a dead horse for next to no benefit and should simply have shut up. 😉

  • For a PvP game the crowfall community is weak-sauce. If this was 8 years ago and darkfall you would have 100 responses and suffer a DDoS attack by now. Youngsters just aint cut from the same cloth i guess.

  • What a ridiculous statement. It was my fault….but not really since I was forced to do it. Either take ownership of it or not. Do not backtrack your own statement all in one sentence.

  • @Topauz: Exactly! To say it’s his fault, then identify how he was forced to do it, then say he basically refused and got fired… but it’s his fault because he came up with an idea for a game that they didn’t make. Uh huh. Sounds to me like someone wishes they were a lot more important than history remembers.

  • @baba: Usually when a company is acquired, the principals are required to stay on for 1 year and 1 day to cash out. That’s why I said that– it was 1y1d from the day they were acquired and name changed to Daybreak, not from today, to be clear. At Smed’s level, I’m sure he has outstanding offers. And who knows, maybe Daybreak will end up a great place to work and he’ll stay. That’s super-rare, but it does happen.

    @maljjin: If you didn’t play SWG and/or were immersed in the MMO news cycle way back in 2005, you actually weren’t the intended audience for that post.

    It’s totally relevent to former SWG players. He was the exec producer, and he’s explaining how he’s partially to blame for the NGE but fought the good fight and ultimately forced them to fire him over it. His agenda is clear, whether he’s being truthful is not. I didn’t back Crowfall so I actually don’t give a crap, I just enjoy the drama!

  • Could be worse, he could have said he is making a new home for SWG fans and then released a shovelware DayZ clone… oh wait.

    As for the topic here, you can’t believe 99% of his post and get mad about it, but then base said anger because you don’t believe the 1% (him bringing up ideas that ultimately lead to the NGE) that would invalidate your anger.

  • Oh I’m not mad — remember, I said in the first sentence it’s hilarious. The point I’m making here is that I do not believe a darn thing he said, but for the sake of the argument if we are to assume he is telling the truth then he makes even less sense than if he was lying.

  • If you believe it 100%, which part doesn’t make sense?

    Also if this was more for attention than to just give his take on the NGE, to people who very clearly care about the NGE (since Crowfall appeals to people who liked pre-NGE SWG), why do it AFTER the Kickstarter? Why create this fancy tale of lies for attention when bringing attention doesn’t help him much now vs before? Especially since he did it on the Crowfall forums (a place where everyone has already given him money) vs during an interview with a site read by non-Crowfall backers?

  • Crowfall doesn’t inherently appeal to people who liked pre-NGE SWG. What part of pre-NGE SWG is even remotely like Crowfall? The Repopulation is like pre-NGE SWG. Crowfall? It’s a game about arcade-like campaign battlegrounds. There’s no sandbox in that at all.

    He’s using it now and not during the Kickstarter because the Kickstarter wasn’t targeting the SWG crowd. It was targeting the crowd of people who are currently desperately looking for any thing to the point where they’ll believe anything you put in front of them. It’s targeting the people who at one point were hardcore into WoW PvP, like the idea of GW2/ESO/DaoC PvP, and pirate Game of Thrones.

    The pre-NGE crowd of SWG isn’t a market you target in a Kickstarter — it’s way too small and polluting your Kickstarter message is a mistake. The pre-NGE crowd is the group you go after in forum posts just like he did, and his attempt (given the tale he’s weaving) is only going to capture the fools.