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Let's Go Fox Hunting...
September 7th 2000, 21:27 CEST by andy

There's something unpleasant going on in a gaming newsgroup. Nothing unusual about that, you say? Well, this is really unpleasant...



Whether it's true or not, Internet lore now accepts that movie studios fraudulently promote their own films by posting pseudonymous reviews online, and even going to far as to create entire fake fan sites. But does this ever happen in the games industry?

According to some readers of the comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.action newsgroup, it's happening right now.

Since the release of the No One Lives Forever "technology demo" last Friday, there have been dozens of posts to the action games newsgroup echoing the comments seen on message boards in the FPS community. The concensus has been that it's a promising game, but the performance is disappointing and the graphics aren't up to scratch.

But standing out from the crowd, there have been a number of messages full of glowing praise for the game.

Some of the newsgroup's readers are now accusing Monolith of having planted these messages.

So is there any evidence to support the allegation? Well... yes, lots. But it's all circumstantial. To kick things off, here's a list of partial headers from the suspicious messages, complete with Deja links:

Path: spln!rex!extra.newsguy.com!newsp.newsguy.com!enews3
From: "Fleschel"
Subject: NOLF demo is *very* nice!
Date: Sat, 2 Sep 2000 00:36:46 -0700
Organization: http://extra.newsguy.com
Message-ID: <8oqam80etm@enews3.newsguy.com>
NNTP-Posting-Host: p-308.newsdawg.com

Path: spln!rex!extra.newsguy.com!newsp.newsguy.com!enews1
From: "Mike Grensbury"
Subject: NOLF: DEFINTELY looking forward to it now
Date: Sat, 2 Sep 2000 04:12:33 -0700
Organization: http://extra.newsguy.com
Message-ID: <8oqnak0r81@enews1.newsguy.com>
NNTP-Posting-Host: p-040.newsdawg.com

Path: spln!rex!dex!extra.newsguy.com!newsp.newsguy.com!enews1
From: "Tiberius"
Subject: nolf - great game! but i have a question...
Date: Sat, 2 Sep 2000 04:21:14 -0700
Organization: http://extra.newsguy.com
Message-ID: <8oqnqt0rn0@enews1.newsguy.com>
NNTP-Posting-Host: p-309.newsdawg.com

Path: spln!rex!extra.newsguy.com!newsp.newsguy.com!enews1
From: "lurker"
Subject: nolf: awesome game but need help!
Date: Mon, 4 Sep 2000 22:31:26 -0700
Organization: http://extra.newsguy.com
Message-ID: <8p20hc0d74@enews1.newsguy.com>
NNTP-Posting-Host: p-164.newsdawg.com

Path: spln!rex!extra.newsguy.com!newsp.newsguy.com!enews3
From: "Kevin"
Subject: nolf clearly is going to be the best FPS released this year - BUT...
Date: Wed, 6 Sep 2000 01:15:42 -0700
Organization: http://extra.newsguy.com
Message-ID: <8p4uh30clr@enews3.newsguy.com>
NNTP-Posting-Host: p-116.newsdawg.com

Path: spln!rex!dex!extra.newsguy.com!newsp.newsguy.com!enews2
From: "Bjornsen"
Subject: Nolf is great fun! I'm buying it. When is it coming out?
Date: Wed, 6 Sep 2000 17:42:25 -0700
Organization: http://extra.newsguy.com
Message-ID: <8p6o9501n2@enews2.newsguy.com>
NNTP-Posting-Host: p-072.newsdawg.com

Path: spln!rex!dex!extra.newsguy.com!newsp.newsguy.com!enews3
From: "Philpo"
Subject: Great game NOLF is!
Date: Wed, 6 Sep 2000 17:48:36 -0700
Organization: http://extra.newsguy.com
Message-ID: <8p6okj02bjk@enews3.newsguy.com>
NNTP-Posting-Host: p-166.newsdawg.com

Even just skimming through those you'll have noticed the most obvious sign that there might be something dodgy going on -- all of the messages are posted through Newsguy, a commercial Usenet provider based in California. Although the 'Organisation' field in the headers is most likely nothing more than an oversight, the 'Path' and 'NNTP-Posting-Host' fields show that all messages originated from Newsguy Extra, an enhanced version of the service. The posting host, newsdawg.com, is owned by Pathlink, an ISP and Newsguy's parent company.

The proof that the messages are not genuine is, as I said, circumstantial. Apart from the obvious fact that the praise they are lavishing on the NOLF demo goes far beyond what other people are saying, all of the posters are lacking in Usenet pedigree -- none of them have any posting history. They're just turned up in the newsgroup and started raving. So were all of these people, coincidentally posting from the same $10-per-month Usenet provider, so impressed by the NOLF demo that they felt compelled to post their first ever Usenet message to sing its praises? It seems unlikely, to say the least.

Just before the NOLF demo was released, these two messages were posted to the action games newsgroup:

From: "3764fug384" <983749@487498.org>
Subject: NOLF BETA DEMO LEAK!
Date: Thu, 31 Aug 2000 15:01:45 -0700
Organization: http://extra.newsguy.com
Message-ID: <8omkjp0c0m@enews1.newsguy.com>
NNTP-Posting-Host: p-596.newsdawg.com

From: "3764fug384" <983749@487498.org>
Subject: M30r h4x0ring NOLF DEMO info
Date: Thu, 31 Aug 2000 15:14:20 -0700
Organization: http://extra.newsguy.com
Message-ID: <8omlbf0jko@enews3.newsguy.com>
NNTP-Posting-Host: p-706.newsdawg.com

These messages, with the same tell-tale header fields as the others, came from another couple of first time posters, and supposedly contained copies of e-mails between Monolith and Fox, revealing the location of the NOLF demo before it was available.

This begs the question, is it really plausible that someone 'hacked' Monolith or Fox to get hold of these e-mails, or is it more likely that the e-mails were deliberately leaked to drum up some underground attention? The FTP site identified in the e-mails currently contains NOLF promotional material.

If these two earlier newsgroup posts were in fact deliberate leaks then that would be fairly damning, as there's a chance that the other messages came from the same Newsguy account. It's far from a certainty, but whoever leaked the e-mails may have posted the fake messages.

So how can we be sure that any or all of these messages have been posted by Monolith? Well, of course, we can't, and I'd suggest that they probably weren't. If these messages are indeed fraudulent, as I believe they are, then I'd suggest that NOLF's publisher, Fox, is the more likely culprit. Did you notice that all of the messages were posted from a time zone seven hours behind GMT, which as well as covering Monolith in Washington, also covers Fox in California?

Monolith has been making games for around eight years now, and generally they've never had more than a luke warm reception from hardcore gamers. So if the people at Monolith were the sort to post fake Usenet messages then I'm guessing they'd have done it a lot sooner than this. (Maybe they have, but it hasn't been documented to my knowledge.) Also, NOLF is getting a good response, so why risk the bad publicity of being exposed as fraudsters? They make some classic PR blunders, but surely not even Monolith could be that phenomenally stupid?

Fox, on the other hand, I believe could be that phenomenally stupid. The people at Monolith would know that the hardcore aren't going to fall for some stupid fake hype campaign on Usenet, but would Fox? Would some marketing drone at Fox realise that "those dumb kids in newsgroups" can spot this sort of thing a mile off? Would he realise that you have to do more than change your name and e-mail address to disguise your identity? And if the marketing drone in question has a background in movie marketing -- which he may well have, working at Fox -- then I think that's another nail in the coffin.

We put all of this to Dan Miller, Monolith's PR co-ordinator. There was quite a long exchange with Dan, but to summarise he said he can't be 100% sure that the messages weren't posted by someone at Monolith, but he doesn't believe they were. He also said that he was aware of the leaked e-mail about the NOLF demo, but he didn't say anything about who may have leaked it.

Jason Hall, Monolith's CEO, was only asked about the allegedly fake messages. Here's what he had to say:

WTF? No. I think this is absolutely ridiculous, and this all new accusation also goes to show me just how in-bred, cynical, and paranoid some of the hardcare game community can be.

Planting messages? What kind? Why can't Monolith just be left alone to make great games? I mean SHEEEESH, we are doing everything we can to make sure that our games are as bug free as possible, fun, that we don't over-hype ourselves... we grant interviews to just about anyone who asks, we are listening to the game community and reacting to it in a positive way... and now gamers just want to throw this crap on us?

I seriously doubt that Fox is planting messages of any sort. If they are, well then there is nothing I can do about it.

The only type of person that I could think would even CARE enough about the Usenet to plant a message would be fan-boy types.

If anyone at Monolith is doing it, which I seriously doubt anyone would be that stupid here, then they are doing it behind my back.

And then, at the end of it all, it is just messages on a freaking newsgroup so I really don't care unless the messages are slanderous or hurting someone in someway. Are they? If not, I have more important stuff to be bothered with really. I can't keep jumping around whenever there is some dumb new accusation by a 13 year old. Know what I mean?

Jason has also posted this message to the comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.action newsgroup.

So there you go. Horrible situation all round, isn't it?

C O M M E N T S
Home » Topic: Let's Go Fox Hunting...

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#1 by "Densun"
2000-09-07 21:32:09
densun@hotmail.com
First?
#2 by "Densun"
2000-09-07 21:32:34
densun@hotmail.com
Alright! And the first time I tried.
#3 by "Botswana"
2000-09-07 21:32:51
God I hope this game doesn't suck
#4 by "Andy"
2000-09-07 21:36:34
andy@planetcrap.com http://www.meejahor.com/
I feel sick.

Seriously. Why is this happening in the <b>games</b> community?

God, working at this site really upsets me sometimes.

I'm going to go away and do something fun. I've worked on this topic since early this morning and I find the whole thing very depressing.

And don't anyone dare say that I'm trying to get at Monolith. You're a moron if you think that.
#5 by "PiRaMidA"
2000-09-07 21:39:40
piramida@agsm.net http://www.agsm.net
Could be it actually is some fanboy who just tries to prove something? Warmonger, what do you think? ;)<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#6 by "Morn"
2000-09-07 21:46:14
morn@planetcrap.com http://www.planetcrap.com
<b>#4</b> "Andy" wrote...
<QUOTE>Seriously. Why is this happening in the <B>games</B> community?</QUOTE>

Because we're all in the mainstream now?

We don't know if it's really happening or not, but if it does, I won't really be surprised. If there is one constant in our universe, then it's that the marketing types around the world always come up with "funny" new stuff to increase brand awareness, and this would actually be a pretty clever way to do so (since the newsgroups are still somewhat known as one of the rare sources of useful reviews. And trollfests!).

Let's see if this turns out to be true or not... I personally believe it's not, because I can't imagine anyone at a place like Fox being netwise enough to pull it off, but who knows.

- Morn
<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#7 by "Nick Burns"
2000-09-07 21:47:29
The_Nick_Burns@hotmail.com http://www.planetcrap.com
Fox is doing it.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#8 by "Jafd"
2000-09-07 21:52:20
jafd@zombieworld.com http://jafd.isfuckingbrilliant.com
Of slightly greater interest, is that some sites had an older version of NOLF; that's the one I downloaded, and after playing it I came to the conclusion that it was shit. I'm downloading the correct version now, I'm glad to give it a second chance.

Leaked emails? Dodgy usenet reviews? Wrong version of the test being released? What's next?

Jason... find a competent mage and get that curse lifted from you. No Joke.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#9 by "Remulak"
2000-09-07 21:56:04
remulak@woodruffs.com
Anybody else think it's funny that Jason mispelled the URL in his newsgroup post?

Beyond that, this is even more of a waste of time than other recent threads.  Let's have more smarty-man debates over game technologies.  That's what got me hooked on this silly site.  I could be wasting my employers valuable time elsewhere.

I'll spend 5 seconds and pull an idea outa my ass.... OK: I'm mad that I missed siggraph, so let's try this:

Hardware 3D rendering for gaming has advanced very little since SGI's initial 3D work decades ago.  We have more triangles, and they are lit and textured faster and better, but the underlying technology has't changed: triangles, and lots of 'em.

When is someone going to come up with the next innovation and what will it be: some variation of voxels, or vectors?  Or something else?

<b>Smarty-men GO</b>
#10 by "asspennies"
2000-09-07 22:00:53
asspennies@coredump.org http://www.coredump.org
<b>#9</b> "Remulak" wrote...
<QUOTE>...but the underlying technology has't changed: triangles, and lots of 'em.

When is someone going to come up with the next innovation and what will it be: some variation of voxels, or vectors? Or something else?
</QUOTE>

I think that all the chip manufacturers found that triangles were easy to implement, they did the job in dramatic fashion, and most importantly, there was a clear line with which they could continue to upgrade their hardware as technology moved forward.

For something to take the trophy away from polygonal rendering, I'd imagine it would have to be a pretty significant leap forward.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#11 by "Kynn"
2000-09-07 22:04:06
kynn@no-skill.net
Interesting thought, but how concerned should we really be about a gaming companies marketing tactics.  Even if they did do this, and I'm not saying that they did, who cares?

Is it really a blow to their image?  I know that if I worked on something I was proud of and the publics opinion of it wasn't what I would like - I may make some posts saying I was pleased with it.  Would I be wrong? Hell yes.  Would it be immature? Yep.  Would it make me a bad person incapable of doing my job (Designing a good, playable and fun game)?  Nah.

Developers and game companies don't have to live up to some huge moral ideals, they just have to make fun games.

Point?  Even if they DID post these messages, so what?  They had a lapse in judgement, so long as the game rocks isn't that all we care about?  

I'm not saying the topic is invalid, just saying that it's time we stopped expected these companies to not be human and let them have a little fun.  Is it really our place to call them out on every aspect of their business?  Wait until they release a game that STINKS while trying to tell us how incredible it is... then we can let loose with both barrels.

-Kynn
#12 by "Karl Palutke"
2000-09-07 22:04:26
palutkek@asme.org
<b>Andy</b> (#4):
<QUOTE>Why is this happening in the <B>games</B> community?

</QUOTE>

It's not.  It's happening in the game <i>business</i>.  To me, the gaming 'community' is the group of people who are fans and supporters of certain games (or companies), or just games in general.  The gaming 'business' consists of the people who produce and distribute the games.  In some cases, there's a little overlap (developers who are active members of the community, etc -- thanks, guys).   Alas, anytime something is used as a source of information, the marketing weasels will attempt to use it to sell their product.
 
I'm not surprised that this has happened, and wouldn't be surprised if it had been done successfully in the past by people more clever than our NOLF 'fans'.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#13 by "Max"
2000-09-07 22:07:34
max@planetcrap.com http://www.planetcrap.com
Sadly, I wouldn't put this sort of thing past either Fox or Monolith at all.

And Morn... it doesn't take any tech savvy to post newsgroup messages under different names.  It's just about the speed I would expect from the sort of marketing idiots we have around my company.

One other point: our aforementioned marketing idiots discussed this sort of fraudulent newsgroup posting in a meeting a few weeks ago - apparently it's a well-known tactic, all too easy to accomplish in the semi-anonymous net world.
#14 by "Kynn"
2000-09-07 22:07:41
kynn@no-skill.net
Just a quick thought;

Since when has someones positive opinion on a newsgroup caused us to go out and buy a game.  Generally, we accept negative opinions easily but when someone praises a game in a newsgroup we disregard it.  The whole Troll theme comes into play here - we don't trust posters opinions generally.

How much interest or swaying of public opinion can these posts really cause?
#15 by "Mark Asher"
2000-09-07 22:10:25
marka@cdmnet.com
If Fox is doing it, it wouldn't surprise me. Hollywood had the attitude several years ago that the games business was run by a bunch of rubes and they could step in with snazzy FMV graphics and their storytelling ability and scoop up all the money. Something like this would just be an extension of that attitude. "The movie fans are on to us, but these dumb gamers will never be able to figure it out!"

I haven't seen one of the Usenet suspects deny it, either.  

BTW, my take on the Usenet buzz before these posts were made was better than Andy's -- NOLF was getting pretty good buzz.
#16 by "Brian Rodway"
2000-09-07 22:12:09
brianr@pavilion.co.uk http://www.pwp2.co.uk
Hi

I downloaded the NOLF demo last night after seeing it at ECTS this week. It was on the Intel stand and looked very impressive.

#3
I have been playing it today and for a tech demo the game looks great. There may be a few performance issues, but isn't this the reason for releasing a tech demo.
#17 by "Nick Burns"
2000-09-07 22:13:56
The_Nick_Burns@hotmail.com http://www.planetcrap.com
<b>#12</b> "Karl Palutke" wrote...
<QUOTE>The gaming 'business' consists of the people who produce and distribute the games. </QUOTE>

The games business are the ones who fuck over developers, whore out their mothers, exploit the market, monopolize sheves, eat their boogers, and create fake pushes like this for lackluster games.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#18 by "Gabe"
2000-09-07 22:16:13
gakruger@hotmail.com
Seems like doing more triangles is just fine. If you can do enough that each triangle covers at most one pixel on the screen, they can be made equivalent to any other rendering technique.

I think the next leap in visual quality will be making the frame buffer hold signed floating point values and having generic dependent texture lookups. Once this is done, pretty much any formula can be converted into graphics operations and practically no effect will be impossible. Some chips do have extensions that allow subtraction, but they do not store the value in the frame buffer. There are also things like cubic environment mapping that perform dependent texture lookups, but you can't do it generically. We will get there.

On topic:

I know that these actions are a little distasteful, but I do not understand why Andy got so depressed about it.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#19 by "Brian Rodway"
2000-09-07 22:19:41
brianr@pavilion.co.uk http://www.pwp2.co.uk
Hi

I downloaded the NOLF demo last night after seeing it at ECTS this week. It was on the Intel stand and looked very impressive on their hardware.

I have been playing it today and for a tech demo the game looks great. There may be a few performance issues on my hardware, but isn't this the reason for releasing a tech demo, to find out any problems.

If messages were posted by someone at Fox, I don't think it matters. The demo is there for people to download, play and then form their own opinion.

Bri.
#20 by "Andrew Stine"
2000-09-07 22:25:19
linguica@doomworld.com http://www.doomworld.com
I had always thought that Fatbabies.com would sink lower than this site to try and find any sort of juicy conspiracy-theory tidbit that they could rummage up, but this takes the cake.  My hat is off to Andy for possibly the most pointless, unimportant, muckraking article I have ever seen.
#21 by "Paul"
2000-09-07 22:25:58
paul@paulbullman.com http://www.paulbullman.com
Solution: Read the reviews of sites you can trust(voodooextreme, stomped.com, etc), and don't bother with newsgroups.

I'm not quite sure if this amounts to a great deal of games being sold though.

-----
Paul A. Bullman
Shrinkweb.com
#22 by "Morn"
2000-09-07 22:36:32
morn@planetcrap.com http://www.planetcrap.com
<b>#21</b> "Paul A. Bullman" wrote...
<QUOTE>Solution: Read the reviews of sites you can trust(voodooextreme, stomped.com, etc)</QUOTE>

Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahah!

Okay, I'm done. :)

- Morn
<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#23 by "PainKilleR-[CE]"
2000-09-07 22:38:57
painkiller@planetfortress.com http://www.planetfortress.com/tftech/
First, how many people even look at the newsgroups for game reviews? I'm quite positive that it's a very low percentage, though it might be slightly higher among the 'hardcore' gamers. In other words, creating a good word for the game on the newsgroups like this doesn't really have a large effect on the public opinion of the game.

Second, how stupid is it to try to hype up a demo of the game? Sure, supposedly the movie companies are doing this with movies, but are they doing this with movie trailers as well? I remember the hype over the Star Wars EP1 trailers, but it seemed mostly media generated, and I thought that was pretty pathetic as well. In other words, what gain do you receive (as a company like Fox) from hyping up a tech demo that probably everyone on that newsgroup can go and download for themselves?

-PainKilleR-[CE]
#24 by "PiRaMidA"
2000-09-07 22:44:35
piramida@agsm.net http://www.agsm.net
Post <b>#20</b> by Andrew Stine:
<QUOTE><i>My hat is off to Andy for possibly the most pointless, unimportant, muckraking article I have ever seen.</i></QUOTE>

My hat is off to you for possibly the most pointless, unimportant, and ill-considered post I have ever seen.

Dude, go check out the newsgroups for yourself. If this kind of marketing is allright with you, may I suggest you try and refrain yourself from saying things like you just did? I've seen just about enough people trying to get on the Andy-kicking bandwagon here, and it is getting truly disgusting...

Now I would go through my post and remove everything I really wanted to say to you... Okey, shugashack-style comments removed, though they were really hard to hold in.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#25 by "Ghost in my Shell"
2000-09-07 22:45:40
People use newsgroups other then 3dfx/nvidia flame wars and warez postings? Oh man I need to see this! ;-)
#26 by "Valeyard"
2000-09-07 22:58:35
valeyard@ck3.net http://www.ck3.net
While this may be somewhat suspicious, I can't really see how this ended up at Monolith's feet.

Let's think logically for a second.

1.  You're not going to get much publicity or attention out of those newsgroups.  The tiny market that frequents those groups will either download the demo and decide for themselves or instantly recognize the messages as fan-boy postings and ignore them.

2.  If you wanted to drum up some free publicity, it'd be VERY simple for any of the "known" developers to select a handful of names from the fan-boy e-mails they receive and send them a copy to beta test and review...with the stipulation that they need to publish their review on the web.  If the game is even AVERAGE, you'll easily have enough glowing praise from them to completely cover the box.  Alternately, you could make some of their "fan" sites official.

After all, what 15-year-old with aspirations of working in the gaming industry wouldn't jump at the chance to beta test or run an "official" fan site?

If Monolith or Fox did post these messages, they're doing things the hard way...and probably won't see much benefit from it.

-Valeyard
#27 by "lechifre"
2000-09-07 23:00:52
lechifre@btinternet.com
Hang on a sec here, Andy may have something, has anyone bothered to find out what Warmonger AI was up to at this time? Does he have a valid alibi?
#28 by "Paul"
2000-09-07 23:01:03
paul@paulbullman.com http://www.paulbullman.com
Morn said:
<quote>"Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahah!

Okay, I'm done. :)"
</quote>

all that i said before, and anything written over at the http://www.developium.com/.

BTW the site looks good, any chance we can get these PC grays to magically turn into blue?

- Paul
#29 by "superion"
2000-09-07 23:01:40
why doesnt someone plant some messages about how they rereleased the demo, but it's still a fucking self extracting zip exe, with install shield files, that decompress to windows\temp and dont remove themselves after installing.

i raise my massive communist fist in anger at this whole sitation, not that i downloaded it a second time, even though i did have the 'bad' version.
#30 by "Warmonger [AI]"
2000-09-07 23:05:16
warmonger87@hotmail.com
<b>#27</b> "lechifre" wrote...
<QUOTE>Hang on a sec here, Andy may have something, has anyone bothered to find out what Warmonger AI was up to at this time? Does he have a valid alibi? </QUOTE>

I would use my own name. Everyone knows that. But, if you need an alibi, I can't give you one. I don't have an alibi. But really, would you think I'd sink this low? I obviously don't have a problem posting my opinions here, using my name, so why would it be any different on usenet?<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#31 by "lechifre"
2000-09-07 23:07:46
lechifre@btinternet.com
I goota be honest, I'm not in depth enough to have a set loyalty or opinion about any particular PC games developer, I like or hate each game on its merits, and I found the NOLFt demo quite boring, after Deus Ex folks really do have to make an effort for me, and not just rely on a gimmicks. I found the NOLFT demo insipid and just un-inspiring in the extreme. I hope this is not taken the wrong way, this is simply my opinion, but I don't see what all the fuss is about.
#32 by "lechifre"
2000-09-07 23:10:40
lechifre@btinternet.com
30 warmong
'twas a joke matey
#33 by "Warmonger [AI]"
2000-09-07 23:12:16
warmonger87@hotmail.com
lechifre: If it was a joke, then you need to ;) your message.

Just a good way to keep people off edge. I imagined it was a joke, but I responded cause I wasn't sure.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#34 by "lechifre"
2000-09-07 23:14:14
lechifre@btinternet.com
;)
#35 by "Warmonger [AI]"
2000-09-07 23:16:26
warmonger87@hotmail.com
:D<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#36 by "lechifre"
2000-09-07 23:19:42
lechifre@btinternet.com
How could anyone be silly enough to take me seriously???
I think you need a break butty ;) ;) ;)

ps I'm well pissed, my bathroom ceiling is gently dribbling water down my mains cables because upstairs is flooded, and the emergency plumber has advised me to "remove the lightbulb from the sodden crackling light fixture in the ceiling" hummmmmmmm...... let me think....... NOPE!
#37 by "Nick Burns"
2000-09-07 23:37:18
The_Nick_Burns@hotmail.com http://www.planetcrap.com
Also the fake feedback story is complete bullshit. Two people, who have posted on usenet before found via deja.com had no email address in their headers. A lot of people don't thanks to spam operations that scoop up email addresses from usenet post. However because of this, some idiot starts running around saying monolth is spaming usenet with fake positive buzz. Its not true, lets not have that crap spread any furthur.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#38 by "Nick Burns"
2000-09-07 23:39:06
The_Nick_Burns@hotmail.com http://www.planetcrap.com
<b>#37</b> "Nick Burns" wrote...
<QUOTE>Its not true</QUOTE>

Bullshit!  It's done on purpose by the evil bastards!!  You fuckface!<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#39 by "Ozymandis"
2000-09-07 23:53:33
rcrisl1@gl.umbc.edu http://none
I really doubt Fox would risk so much just to season Usenet opinions of NOLF.  Doesn't make much sense to me.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#40 by "MCorleone"
2000-09-08 00:43:35
john_st123@hotmail.com
I want to believe JHall...  That Lith knew nothing about it.  In fact, I'm going to believe him.  It's true that Monolith has a lot riding on this game as it's probably carrying a lot of invested capital, but I don't think they'd try and dupe the gaming community a second time.  They tried it with Blood2/The Ripoff Levels, and I truly hope they learned their lesson.

Fox on the other hand, looks to be guilty in my eyes.  That rehash of AvP was quite cheesy.  To me it was a fairly obvious grab for cash: to milk the teet of AvP with a couple new levels.  They have less to lose, also.
#41 by "The Joker"
2000-09-08 00:48:38
joker@junkextreme.com http://www.junkextreme.com
Is it just me or is PlanetCrap.com really slow today? It takes minutes to download a page.

The time has come for developers to stop the FPS crap. We've had enough of em, and until someone comes around that will drastically change/improve the FPS games gameplay-wise, they can better stop making them. Marketing people/Publishers: Do not allow your engineers to work on FPS games anymore. The market is saturated, and your game won't sell, you will go out of business.

The only reason why Duke Nukem Forever will sell more copies than NOLF is because of its name. 3D Realms, beware, expect to sell a lot less copies than you were hoping for.

The only reason why Q3A sold as much copies as it did, is because the name was Q3A, and the company was id Software. Had it been an unknown developer, with the same game, but a different name, it would have sold a lot less. Carmack recently said Q3A didn't sell as well as he had hoped. And I had foreseen that. Carmack thinks this is because Q3A was more multiplayer focused. I think not, there's plenty of single player experience in there. Doom 3 won't sell as well as they hope either. Not as much as Doom 1 and 2 in any case. The only reason why Doom will sell more than NOLF is because of, again, the name and the developer.

When a gamer goes out to buy a game, he sees a ton of FPS games lined up, which one does he choose? He will choose the popular one, or the best one, and obviously thats any game from id software, valve or 3D Realms (assuming they are still developing games). Other FPS games will sell a lot less. Also because there are so many to choose from, all offering the same gameplay, they all share a small piece of the market, with id software, valve etc. taking the biggest shares. Doesn't leave much for the rest.

KISS for example won't sell many copies. I believe it will sell less than, or up to the same amount of copies as Shogo did if they are lucky.

When you've played one FPS game, you've basically played them all. I personally would be satisfied playing the best out of the whole bunch. Or, playing the one with the story I like most. It's all a matter of personal taste. This is not why Doom and Doom 2 sold so many copies. They sold that many copies because they offered completely new gameplay with a good story. Duke expanded a bit more on the gameplay by adding more interactivity and attitude. And unless a developer comes with some revolutionary changes in gameplay, and not only visual and other tech improvements, they can better stop making FPS games.
Replayability? What fucking replayability?

The problem is no one wants to take chances. Doom and Doom 2 were successful, so they think they'll get rich fast by copying those idea's (then all the FPSs started popping up left and right). No one wants to try something new, afraid it will flop. Let me say this: id Software got that big because they did try something different. And you can call it luck that their idea's were good and were accepted by everyone, because they also could have failed misserably. People could have thought the gameplay Wolf3D and Doom offered were crap, but that didn't happen. It is the unique and different games that have a chance at being 'the next big thing'. Not the goddamn fucking Doom clones, ie all FPSs out there.

Now take Duke4Ever for example. What's it got to offer more than Quake 2 or Quake 3? Different graphics? Different sounds? But what about the gameplay? Same shit.
Be prepared 3D Realms, Duke4Ever sales will be disapointing. Trust me.

NOLF......has a lot of potential. The team tried some new stuff which caught my attention, but not enough. The second and third level in the tech demo got boring within seconds. Shooting guards, collecting envelopes for stupid reasons.......Monolith could have done a lot better. Had they offered drastically different situations (like the freefall) in most levels, it would have had a lot more potential.

Like Todd McFarlane says, you have to try something different, something others wouldn't dare to do. Come up with something new, something that would either flop bigtime, or be a huge hit worldwide. While everyone is going left, go right. That's how you become and make the next big thing. Don't follow everyone else or what the supposedly mofo "hardcore gamers" say (most of them just calling themselves hardcore gamers and not knowing Jack Shit about games and the way this industry works, misleading developers and marketing people), and you know who you are.

id Software can afford to make Doom 3, they will be able to sell it, but not as much as they hope for, unless ofcourse, they have a lot more than just visuals to offer us, beware Carmack. After Doom 3, assuming its gameplay is going to be the same FPS shit, id Software will want to think about doing a different type of game. They have the cash and are in the position to once again try to make the next big thing. If it flops, they wont feel it that much.

After reading this Broussard, you may want to cancel Duke4Ever for another 2 years, and switch to the Doom 3 engine later, and make sure you have more to offer us than just your basic FPS. Because the FPS business is getting boring and uninteresting.

I've been saying these things to Jace for a year now. And they wouldn't listen when I told them NOLF was a bad idea. We'll see if I was right or wrong. A year ago I also told Jace Q3A wasn't going to be the hit that they thought it would be, and that it wouldnt sell as well as they were hoping for. I was right about it. I hope for the sake of developers out there, that I am wrong this time. But chances are very little, because I am a goddamn genius. Somebody, prove me wrong!

Vasta la Hista, babey!

Joker.
#42 by "Ard Macha"
2000-09-08 00:55:26
poop@poop.com
I've seen this before and I guess its gonna happen more and more often now.

Theres a NG alt.digitiser which is a meeting place for UK game fans which was infiltrated (if thats the right word) by Infogrames and or PR for Infogrames earlier this year.

Someone on the group gave a few negative thoughts on Wacky Races (a racing game) which was then followed up on by several posts raving about it by some unknown posters (all from the same domain!).

Seeing as this is an extremely close NG this was highly suspicious and subsequently discovered to be a bit of PR by the publishers.

This was reported about on a few games sites/gossip sites on this side of the pond.
#43 by "PiRaMidA"
2000-09-08 01:07:19
piramida@agsm.net http://www.agsm.net
Kinda interesting mutation of what PR is supposed to be - a bunch of friendly people who answer media/consumer questions and worry big deal about their image - and what it has become - a bunch of arseholes who would not hesitate to stuff a microchip in your brain if that would result in an extra sale. Sad, really.

/me recalls GameSpy Industries PR work... Amazing, where do they get all those liars? Are people born like that or do they specifically train them to never say a word of truth? Whores.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#44 by "IlIIllllI1"
2000-09-08 01:15:57
yes switch duke4ever to the doom3 engine for love of god!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

PS: BTW - here are the steps to get rid of bad performance in the bad game no one lives for ever.

1. uninstall game
2. restart compuer
3. install quake3
4. play quake3

now your system is free of the monolith sucky game virus and quake3 takes its place. which i might add is a superior game.
#45 by "Warmonger [AI]"
2000-09-08 01:18:40
warmonger87@hotmail.com
<b>#44</b> "IlIIllllI1" wrote...
<QUOTE>yes switch duke4ever to the doom3 engine for love of god!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

PS: BTW - here are the steps to get rid of bad performance in the bad game no one lives for ever.

1. uninstall game
2. restart compuer
3. install quake3
4. play quake3

now your system is free of the monolith sucky game virus and quake3 takes its place. which i might add is a superior game. </QUOTE>

Hi barcode!<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#46 by "12xu"
2000-09-08 01:25:30
mswitzer@insync.net http://http;//www.hichouston.org
<b>#45</b> "Warmonger [AI]" wrote...
<QUOTE>Hi barcode!</QUOTE>

HEY!!

if you quote barcode boy in his entirety it's really a waste for me to have plonked him....

12xu
out<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#47 by "PiRaMidA"
2000-09-08 01:39:00
piramida@agsm.net http://www.agsm.net
Post <b>#46</b> by 12xu:
<QUOTE><i>
if you quote barcode boy in his entirety it's really a waste for me to have plonked him....
</i></QUOTE>

Plonk everyone who quotes him and then those who quote those who quote barcode. That way you get everyone plonked and you can be sure that no offending material ever reaches your eyes :)

Ignoring people just does not work on PC :(<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#48 by "err head"
2000-09-08 01:43:41
err_head@yahoo.com
<b>The Joker</b> (#41):
<QUOTE>

Now take Duke4Ever for example. What's it got to offer more than Quake 2 or Quake 3? Different graphics? Different sounds? But what about the gameplay? Same shit.
Be prepared 3D Realms, Duke4Ever sales will be disapointing. Trust me.
</QUOTE>

Well I agree on the fps-glut, I think you may be jumping the gun on duke.  Unless you have secret information sources, you know as much as the rest of us which ain't much.  maybe each game comes with a pair of USB sim-u-shorts for the ultra-realistic lap dances.  At this point you're just assuming it won't have incredibly new a different game play, wait till it's out to dis it.

If it was a fox marketroid doing the postings, hopefully the publicity will get him slapped down and maybe keep them from doing it again for awhile. Being a california ISP, I seriously doubt it was monolith, unless they were using their elite hacker skillz and just picked some patsy in cali to take the fall.  Of course, if they had elite hacker skills they would have used multiple accounts anyway, so it looks like fox or fanboy.
<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#49 by "bagofmice"
2000-09-08 01:49:36
rcastle@microsoft.com
A off topic comment:

Why is everyone permanently affected with the (NEW!) tag after their name?

I mean <quote>[22] Morn (NEW!) </quote> just doesn't look right.
#50 by "Warren Marshall"
2000-09-08 01:55:26
warren@epicgames.com http://www.epicgames.com
<quote>Ignoring people just does not work on PC :( </quote>

Sure it does.  I have a LOT more fun here now that I don't have to read the troll comments.  I'm telling you, get CrapSpy ... this site changes for the better.  MUCH better.  :)
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