Yesterday John Smedley, president of SOE, tweeted:
Clearing up a few misconceptions about EQN in Europe and UK. All players including ones from Prosieben can play on all servers.
If you are from the Eu or UK you will go through Prosieben but it will be playing on SOE servers.
And there was a disturbance in the force as if thousands of EU players cried out in pain. Now, this could be a misunderstanding based on the nature of the selected medium- 140 characters might have been too short to add “if you have an SOE account you’ll be able to use that”- but given that John Smedley was quite active in conversations on twitter yesterday but didn’t react in any way to the outcries of the european players, this might just confirm EU players will have to go through P7S1 games and corresponding accounts for EQ Next.
This does make sense from the perspective of the publisher- the deal with P7S1 was announced shortly after the first bit of news of EQ Next hit the media- so my guess would be that EQN is the main interest of P7S1 getting the publishing rights for the EU. Now, Planetside 2 might play a role, as well. but my guess is the main bullet point of the deal in some office somewhere in germany was EQ Next. So forcing us to go with them is not unexpected.
Now, there are a lot of reasons why this is a bad idea and, if true, why i’ll choose not to play Everquest Next- some of them are rational, some others not. Let’s start with the irrational ones.
- P7S1 is a media company that owns around half of the private tv stations in germany. And they’re bad- i mean, basically all channels in germany- excluding the public ones- show the same crap. I really, really, don’t like the company- neither this one, nor the other big private tv channel owner. So i don’t want to give them my money.
- Furthermore, i don’t trust german companies in the web very much. I don’t want to go into much details (word count is high, again). To summarize- german companies often think of the internet as a new way of tricking people out of their money and i don’t like that very much, either. I’d also like to point out that “earning money via the web” and “tricking people into spending their money via the web” are two different things.
P7S1 games could be different, of course. But then you’ll have the more rational stuff/stories i read about P7S1 in the past.
- There is a paragraph in their TOS about deleting account information, including characters and paid ingame-store currency after 90 days of inactivity (Paragraph 3.6 – in case you’re wondering: Alaplaya.net is owned by P7S1 games). Now imagine that. You pay for 100$ worth of currency, then go on a vacation, work as an expat or whatever. When you return, your account and your store currency is gone.
- They published real names of players who missed subscription payments in their forums. Apparently they implemented a “more professional” way to track payments in the meantime.
- There was a security issue with Planetside 2 accounts.
- A CM, asked about a triple-station-cash sale suggested (physically) migrating to north america if you aren’t happy in the EU and with the sales of P7S1- but when you’re there, don’t complain if you miss the sales on other continents.
- They messed up the transition of services of DCUO, bad. From what i hear, accounts got lost, DLCs got lost, store currencies got lost. When asked about it, customer service told the person they have the option to register for a new account (losing everything they spent with SOE).
- P7S1 has not much experience in this business. Look at their portfolio and remove the SOE titles, and you have almost nothing in terms of MMORPGs. My guess is many people outside of germany have never heard of them being a publisher of multiplayer games before the SOE deal.
- I have station cash i wouldn’t be able to use with P7S1. Granted, they offered an account transfer, but since i didn’t want to go to P7S1 then, as well, i chose to stay with SOE. And i’ll tell you that: even if they offered the same thing again, i’d still not do it.
So, this all might be hyperbole- it might be somewhat irrational, but these are the reasons i won’t play EQ Next via a P7S1 account. At all.
Fortunately, i’m not alone. It’s refreshing to see that the massively community seems to agree this one time- and i sure hope SOE got the message by now.