The hardworking Jim “Tork” Younkin, Community Manager for Alganon has sent us the following update. With less than one week before the game launches it’s always nice to take a look at how the game is shaping up!
With only one week left until Alganon launches, we thought we would share some of the most commonly brought up topics concerning Alganon with you, as well as address how the game is shaping up for its launch December 1st!
First of all, we’re still solid for the release on December 1st. As many of you have noticed, we have been taking the servers down more frequently to implement features and fixes in preparation for the official launch. Anyone playing over the last week can attest to the combat lag and enemies not respawning as they should, and we’re happy to say our most recent patch has taken a large stride towards correcting them (if not fixed them altogether). The servers should now be smooth and you can again aim your weapons in confidence (or terror – have you seen those Pool Sharks?!).
Our newly-upgraded billing system has also been unleashed, allowing players to purchase the game from MyAlganon again. This includes the ability for international customers to purchase as well! We have been working hard to get international billing in, so we’re very excited about this (as are the eager international players!!) Also, we have added international keyboard and 10-key support to the game, so international users will find it much easier to log in and play!
As always, we’re working feverishly to get everything into the game by December 1st. O ne of our biggest boons has been all of our beta players, who aren’t just playing, but sending in bugs and suggestions on a regular basis. Needless to say, we look at each and every one of these and put them to good use, so we just wanted to thank you all for the tireless work. Yes, even the person who suggested adding plaid jumpsuits as a character outfit (you know who you are…)
That being said, on to the topics!
Most players who complain about Alganon’s similarities to WoW actually like the game
Interestingly enough, when we look at the content and features of Alganon, the majority of negative feedback is centered on complaints that there are similarities to World of Warcraft. It’s absolutely no secret that Alganon is a game made by gamers and with gamers in mind. That being said, we see what gamers want and what they’re asking for, and we are creating a game that will hopefully do just that. World of Warcraft is a fantastic MMO with many great features, as are a great many others still played by online gamers, and it would be fighting against the very nature of this community not to consider and include as many of the wonderful ideas and features that we’ve come to love and wish for in a single game as we can. In fact, interestingly enough when given a chance to privately talk in game to GMs the majority of players giving negative feedback weren’t all that upset about bugs or problems in the game, but the fact that the game has similar features to others they play. When asked why they were upset by including some of their favorite features in the game, many were left wondering this themselves. We aren’t trying to take another game and change it – we’re just making a game with as many asked-for features as we can fit in.
Why the initial launch date was moved back a month to December 1st
The choice to keep the initial launch date or move it back a month wasn’t an easy one. We are more eager than anyone to get the game out to the community, but the very foundation of our game is based on and around that same community. We listened to their feedback and weighed our options carefully, and in the end decided that releasing Alganon on December 1st was the best thing to do for everyone involved. We were relieved by the large wave of support on this decision from our beta community, as they were the main advocates of that extra time needed to bring Alganon to the level of quality we will hit at launch.
If you want real feedback from players, look in the Alganon forums
Alganon’s community is an absolutely amazing group of players. They haven’t just been people who play the game during beta, but active testers who report bugs, give suggestions and are very receptive sounding boards. We take our community interaction very seriously and appreciate all of their feedback. This feedback, however, has thus far been restricted mainly to the forums (the NDA restricted public comments until a week or so ago), so the majority of the gaming community hasn’t gotten the chance to see all of the praise and positive feedback from our players. In fact, it’s interesting to note that the vast majority of opinions posted around the review sites are those of players that never got the chance to play the game, either because they weren’t in the closed beta or because of bugs in the game when they were. We’re hoping that since the game is now in open beta players won’t just make their comments on Alganon’s forums, but spread the word to their most frequented forums as well, giving people a much more well-rounded view of the game from players that are actually playing.
There have been issues with the game and beta is drawing to a close (server issues/client issues/lag)
We’re the first to admit the later stages of our beta have been rocky for players. As content was tweaked and added, problems arose with our connection between players and the server, causing a sizable portion of our playerbase to experience frequent disconnects from the game and, for the less fortunate, the inability to log into the game at all. Framerate slowdown was also something that reared its head as we adjusted how the game communicated on several levels. We have since fixed nearly all of these issues and are indebted to our loyal and steady players for both their help and patience. Oftentimes players tend to adopt the view of a closed beta as a chance to see the full game in action before it hits the shelves instead of the opportunity to help shape a game before it’s released. Our community is second to none, and this was definitely illustrated during those trying times. We are working very hard to make you best game possible, as you, our players, deserve no less than our best.
What is the goal for Alganon? Why are you making this game?
We’re making a game for gamers. Plain and simple. QOL was founded to create a game, where many others are created purely to make money. This aspect is very near and dear to our hearts. We’re here to make a game for people to play WITH us, not just to pay us to play it. If we were focused on making money, there are often easier ways to do it than making an MMO, which traditionally is a gamble. We are 100% driven to creating something that can grow along with (and more so, with the help of) our community, and this driving force is one thing that makes Alganon s uch a wonderful opportunity for players and developers alike.
Alganon is not trying to take down “the big ones”, nor is it trying to reinvent the wheel. The current mainstream MMO isn’t broken; what Alganon does is take many beloved and asked-for features and add a new assortment to them, whether it be a new spin on an old mechanic or new ones altogether. Basically we’re trying to weave in the best of everything we can think of. Immensely popular MMOs (such as World of Warcraft) have given players years of enjoyment, but the same players that love them are also seeing them wear thin. Infrequent expansions can only add so much before you are back to the same thing again. Where Alganon shines is the ability for us to offer something that feels familiar while still delivering a game with fresh features and a uniquely community-driven world.
We have to respect the honest and straight up to the point approach of the hardworking people at Algalon. Good luck on the launch next week folks!
Alganon is the first real fantasy-based persistent MMOG in nearly two years, and using an original IP to create this fantasy world is just one more way we are trying to give players a fresh perspective in a highly populated MMOG community. As a game, we aren’t looking to take anyone on or steal players away from a game. We are striving to be that game that people don’t feel they need to quit another for, but play hand-in-hand. In fact, we’ve gone to great lengths to design the game around that very aspect.
In the end, it all boils down to the simple fact that we’re here for you, the players. You speak and we listen. To be honest, that’s what it should always come down to. We appreciate all of the player support and feedback, and will continue to work hard through launch and beyond.