PlanetCrap 6.0!
Front Page (ATOM) • Submission Bin (2) • ArchivesUsersLoginCreate Account
You are currently not logged in.
T O P I C
KvK in AC2: America, some of EU vs Rest Of The World
November 29th 2002, 12:05 CET by m0nty

MMORPG fanbois are up in arms over a decision by Microsoft to restrict access to playing Asheron's Call 2 to those who have credit cards registered in the US, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, or Britain. Microsoft blames its new billing regime for the exclusion of entire continents from playing, despite the fact that it is blocking some countries who use Euros, while including others.

One of the main complaints about Microsoft's decision is the lateness of its announcement, meaning that many players in countries outside the chosen few have to return their pre-ordered copies at their own expense. The official message board removed the thread on the issue, although if you want to know what the fanbois think, go visit the excellent Waterthread.

Assuming that the billing excuse is a smokescreen, if you want to look at the real reasons behind the decision, it's not hard to speculate. The eight countries in Phase 1 of the AC2 billing roll-out are the ones who would be expected to give the most revenue back to Microsoft, thus are the ones best able to justify the expense of support staff, marketing expenses and bank transaction fees. Also, Microsoft won't have to worry about whether to open shards in countries outside its supported realms.

One has to question how much people outside America and Europe get out of MMOGs anyway, especially when they have no local shards to play on. Not every country is as lucky as to have phat pipes running past every home with multiple broadband providers competing for your business, so many players are forced to connect via modems (me included). Apart from the 400+ ping issues, playing a MMOG on a 56K modem is difficult, as this snippet from an AC2 preview in an Australian gaming magazine shows:

MULTIPLAYER DATA RATE
Send: 0.8KBps
Receive: 0.2KBps per player in range
The good news for all modem users is that being an MMORPG the amount of data and timing is well within modem tolerance. A word of warning though, at 200bytes per player in range 56K modems will reach their max with only 25 players in the vicinity. The bad news for everyone though is that on cable or ADSL for anyone with a machine less than 2GHz the main factor of latency will be video performance, not network.

Should MMOGs be the sole preserve of American and European players with broadband up the arse? Should modem players be banz0rred from online gaming, or are they quaintly cute enough to be preserved as living fossils? Is this decision a forerunner of some vast international Microsoft conspiracy involving Palladium? Is Waterthread the new Lum?
C O M M E N T S
Home » Topic: KvK in AC2: America, some of EU vs Rest Of The World

|«« - Previous Page - Next Page - »»|
#1 by Hugin
2002-11-29 12:26:49
lmccain@nber.org
*Yawn*.  Good morning.
#2 by Hugin
2002-11-29 12:32:10
lmccain@nber.org
Was up most of last night doing the Turducken for our one day late Thanksgiving (all the friends who wanted to attend could only get together today).  It looks pretty good when its done, but man is it a pain to set up.  All told it took aboout 8 hours, between all the de-boning of the poultry, the cooking of the three stuffings, all the chilling of the ingredients you need to do (everything needs to be kept very cold), and the assembly.

And let me tell you, three boneless birds and three layers of stuffing all layered on top of and wrapped and tied together feels damn weird in your hands.  I mean, it squishes.  It gurgles. I hope this turns out well, but really, unless it's really spectacular when it's done, next year we go back to the deep fried turkey.
#3 by jafd
2002-11-29 12:36:05
I am hoping that the entire process has been immortalized with your digital camera, and a mighty collage will be forthcoming.

re: topic, some people will have to wait while some feed at the trough. This is news?

Don't laugh -- you're next.
#4 by Matt Davis
2002-11-29 12:41:45
http://looroll.com
Having to wait for games is not uncommon, Starfox came out in europe only a week ago, and we're not expecting Metroid Prime until March 2003. Thats a far worse crime then limiting access to an MMORPG to a few countries.

Everyone in this room is now dumber for having heard it. God have mercy on your soul.
#5 by Hugin
2002-11-29 12:43:13
lmccain@nber.org
In terms of the topic, I have to say I'm sympathetic, but I don't quite see what can be done.  Online play is inevitably bandwidth intensive.  This is true most acutely with action games, but even with slower paced games, when the world complexity and eye candy go up....it's like complaining about not being able to watch the Sopranos because you live in a country/area that doesn't get cable.  It sucks, but I'd argue that the solution is to hammer local governments or national governments to help facilitate the rollout of consumer broadband services, not hammer the companies that make the games. I just don't really see how it's their responsibility to make the infrastructure that supports thier games go.  This is assuming they're making a reasonably effort to tighten up and optimize thier code, so that it consumes around as little bandwidth as it can, though I'm sure one could always argue that for an MMOG, this shold be an absolutely top concern...would gamers sacrifice features for leanness?  That's always a concern, isn't it, balancing game features and complexity vs. system requirements and breadth of potential userbase....

Enh, I dunno Monty.  I have to come back to blaming Australia's telecom management more than anything.  There's always SP gaming, but the intensive online stuff...I think you're just SOL, unless AU gets it's fat pipe act together, or some smart Carmackian person figures out a way to squish more content into skinny pipes.
#6 by Hugin
2002-11-29 12:48:33
lmccain@nber.org
Jafd, the main problem is almost evey stage of the process involves gooping up your hands with various substances, raw stuffing stuff, bird guts, etc, which makes manipulating the camera a non-starter.  And because time is of the essence, it's really not prudent safety-wise to stop, wash hands thoroughly, take pictures, then start again.  I contemplated doing the whole thing outside in the back yard, but frankly it was just too cold outside, my hands were too cold to do anything useful, deboning birds takes dexterity.

I have one pic of the Frankenturkey after it was sewn up, and I'll take some more pics when it's cooked and when it's cut.  But there won't be a comprehensive photo montage.  You can see similar examples in some online Turducken sites though.
#7 by garin
2002-11-29 13:03:01
garin@unitzero.cjb.net
Hugin, theres more to it than m0nty's complaining about his 56k. You are not permitted to play the game if you live outside of the nine countries selected, no matter your connection.

Not that I care about AC2, of course, but if this were a game I was interested in I would probably be pissed off.
#8 by Your Friend
2002-11-29 13:17:57

The eight countries in Phase 1 of the AC2 billing roll-out are the ones who would be expected to give the most revenue back to Microsoft, thus are the ones best able to justify the expense of support staff, marketing expenses and bank transaction fees. Also, Microsoft won't have to worry about whether to open shards in countries outside its supported realms.


So?

Microsoft is a BUSINESS, not a goodwill provider of MMORPGs.  

STFU.

Play a competing MMORPG.

Microsoft owes you nothing.

EOD.
#9 by MCorleone
2002-11-29 14:19:56
You mean gasp Microsoft is only rolling out the game where they expect to make money?  

My word!  *drops monocle*

Imagine the world in a bottle.  We take that bottle, smash it, and open your throat with it.  I warn you, we are murderous - COIL
#10 by jafd
2002-11-29 14:24:13
You needed to get a newspaper to send a cute intern to chronicle the event. Viva la junket!

I hope everyone had a happy day yesterday. Mine was miserable. Gravy was too thin and I didn't get to play Prime all day. So, I had to wait. Would one of my fanbois please get themselves up in arms? kthx.

Don't laugh -- you're next.
#11 by Charles
2002-11-29 14:43:03
www.bluh.org
People are complaining because they are missing out on an opportunity to play a horribly boring and derivitave game?  What?

#12 by Charles
2002-11-29 14:47:45
www.bluh.org
Wind: SW at 35 km/h
Wind Gusts: 50 km/h

And something in my apartment ceiling is rattling like a motherfucker.  Being up before 11am is like suicide.

#13 by Duality
2002-11-29 15:01:26
Dualipuff@yahoo.com http://stratoscape.ath.cx/
Mmmm intern ...

I would say that Microsoft dropped the ball selling their product in unsupported regions ...

... I would say that if I didn't think that when dealing with international subscription services, not to assume your area is supported.

But I do agree that it would have been more approriate to make that policy public earlier.
#14 by Ashiran
2002-11-29 15:22:01
People are complaining because they are missing out on an opportunity to play a horribly boring and derivitave game?

No no, not people. MMORPG fanbois.
I find the whole story to ridicilous for words anyway. So you might not be able to play a game. It's not even a unique game. Well booh fucking hoo.

This is just one of those signs that being civilized == being a whining pussy.

"This is planetcrap, where we nuke everything from orbit." - Bailey
#15 by jjohnsen
2002-11-29 16:09:49
http://www.johnsenclan.com
I don't understand why they were selling the game in areas it wasn't supported?

I am trying to catch up to Ergo's Dvd collection.
#16 by Matt Davis
2002-11-29 16:11:11
http://looroll.com
They probably weren't, just grey imports.

Everyone in this room is now dumber for having heard it. God have mercy on your soul.
#17 by Bailey
2002-11-29 17:09:34
Hugin

it's like complaining about not being able to watch the Sopranos because you live in a country/area that doesn't get cable.

Except MMOGs don't come out on DVD at Blockbuster.

Yeah, that's right. Your mother.
#18 by Charles
2002-11-29 17:21:07
www.bluh.org
Bailey's indian name is He-Who-Pokes-Holes-In-Arguments.

#19 by Foodbunny
2002-11-29 18:47:04
foodbunny@attbi.com http://www.foodbunny.com
We took the PS2 over to my aunt's house and got everyone playing Robot Alchemic Drive.  It was a hit.  Unfortunately my aunt dithered and dithered and dithered and waiting until 4:30 pm to serve lunch (yes, we do Thanksgiving lunch and dinner is pie) and the turkey was underdone, the mashed potatoes were somehow turned into a sticky substance that tasted like paste, and the stuffing was too moist.  I wish we could to Thanksgiving at a home where things get done on time instead of 3 hours late and only halfdone by then.

It won't have any impact on DNF.  Nothing really does.
It Takes A Tough Man To Make A Tender Scott Miller.
#20 by ProStyle
2002-11-29 18:52:19
http://prostyle.deviantart.com
Should modem players be banz0rred from online gaming, or are they quaintly cute enough to be preserved as living fossils?

Whenever I play CS usually I only frequent servers that have a ping > 100ms = kick policy. You get 30 people on a server w/ 5-30-50 pings and it's all good, then comes along this guy with a 300 ping who "catches up" and "falls back" to wherever he should be randomly while you're trying to shoot him and it really messes with your mind. He needs to be online reading a website not trying to play an FPS, let alone one that precise. I don't know how high-latency players are in MMORPG's but I bet they have their fare share of goofy antics swimming in their void of packet loss.

I'm like a quote out of context...
#21 by Charles
2002-11-29 18:55:06
www.bluh.org
In DAoC and UO they ran slower than everyone else.

#22 by Sgt Hulka
2002-11-29 18:56:21
MMORPG's are the devil.

#23 by m0nty
2002-11-29 19:02:11
http://tinfinger.blogspot.com
BTW, some ppl seem to think it's 9 countries included, with the name of Japan somehow entering into the list somewhere. The official Microsoft site only lists eight, with Japan not included.
#24 by LPMiller
2002-11-29 19:08:12
lpmiller@gotapex.com http://www.gotapex.com
who cares?

Oh, and how could forget Korea as a place where MMOGs are big? Europe and America have nothing on them.

I believe I can fly......urk.
#25 by m0nty
2002-11-29 19:11:52
http://tinfinger.blogspot.com
oh, and DJ Mauve was correct in #16, the people who are out of pocket were grey importers.
#26 by MCorleone
2002-11-29 19:27:47
M0nty, your single-handed attempts at keeping your thread alive are admirable.  Just sign here though, and we'll take the pain away.

Imagine the world in a bottle.  We take that bottle, smash it, and open your throat with it.  I warn you, we are murderous - COIL
#27 by Matt Davis
2002-11-29 19:39:30
http://looroll.com
ProStyle,

So if your broadband connection goes wrong and your without it for a month how would you feel is every CS server kicked you off for having a ping of 100+?

Everyone in this room is now dumber for having heard it. God have mercy on your soul.
#28 by m0nty
2002-11-29 19:42:53
http://tinfinger.blogspot.com
I suppose I shouldn't have expected any sympathy from PlanetCrap, where I am the only regular poster who is not in one of the eight chosen countries (AFAIK). If any Aussie PC lurkers feel like de-lurking and offering their support, now would be a good time.
#29 by Fugazi(werking)
2002-11-29 19:44:39
Can't play AC2? Get a group together and do some Live Action Roleplaying! I think that's about the same level as MMORPG obsession.

"Good health" is merely the slowest rate at which one can die.
#30 by Matt Davis
2002-11-29 19:45:44
http://looroll.com
m0nty,

I'll spin the decks for you tonight to make it all better.

Everyone in this room is now dumber for having heard it. God have mercy on your soul.
#31 by Duality
2002-11-29 20:12:23
Dualipuff@yahoo.com http://stratoscape.ath.cx/
He needs to be online reading a website not trying to play an FPS


You've forgotten your roots, boy.  I still remember when 300ms was considered average.
#32 by Shadarr
2002-11-29 20:14:29
shadarr@yahoo.com http://digital-luddite.com
Monty,

I don't think it's that everyone else is in the "eight chosen countries", although that may be true, so much as it's that nobody really wants to play the game.  Do you want to play the game?  Or do you just want to have the option so you can feel like you chose not to play of your own free will?
#33 by m0nty
2002-11-29 20:28:29
http://tinfinger.blogspot.com
I'm not a MMOG player, but I am worried that this will start a trend, whereby games will only be released outside the major territories if they are guaranteed to sell well. It's been hard enough to get quality titles which have struggled to find Australian distributors - The Longest Journey was one such game. It's a Bad Thing (tm) which I would not want to see repeated in a pattern.
#34 by MCorleone
2002-11-29 20:31:58
You know, the real reason you made this a topic might make a good topic...

Imagine the world in a bottle.  We take that bottle, smash it, and open your throat with it.  I warn you, we are murderous - COIL
#35 by Shadarr
2002-11-29 20:35:04
shadarr@yahoo.com http://digital-luddite.com
Although I sympathise with your predicament, this is PlanetCrap and so I say "If you don't want to be treated like a third-world country, tow your little island closer to North America".
#36 by Charles
2002-11-29 20:49:39
www.bluh.org
So if your broadband connection goes wrong and your without it for a month


What kind of strange backwards third world country would that happen in?  California?

#37 by LPMiller
2002-11-29 20:57:47
lpmiller@gotapex.com http://www.gotapex.com
What trend? There aren't that many products that are sold, unchanged in any form, to all countries. This is normal operating procedure, not some new, scary video game trend.

And I'm sorry, but DAOC and the like are quite playable at 56k. Maybe not from aussie land, but I bet if you actually had a server there, it wouldn't be a problem. Memory and type of video card can make a bigger difference than connection rate, depending on the game. If MS doesnt' think it can make money in other countries during the first phase, should they be forced to make the product available there anyway?

I believe I can fly......urk.
#38 by Ashiran
2002-11-29 21:06:24
Aussie land. Where everything is the other way around.

The little hand that could! *note: that is not a DVD case*
#39 by m0nty
2002-11-29 21:14:59
http://tinfinger.blogspot.com
IF we had a server, LP. That's a big if. No, Microsoft shouldn't be forced to do anything (except maybe split into two, but we missed that chance). I disliked the disingenuous reasoning: if they actually made a business decision based on expected revenues, then say it in public and cop the consumer backlash, don't hide behind some lame excuse of "billing issues".
#40 by LPMiller
2002-11-29 21:56:18
lpmiller@gotapex.com http://www.gotapex.com
yes, because Microsoft never suffers from buggy software. Ever.

I dunno, if I were you, I'd be thankful.

I believe I can fly......urk.
#41 by Charles
2002-11-29 22:01:51
www.bluh.org
I'd call lack of revenue a billing issue.  After all, the lack of billing would be the issue.

#42 by Desiato
2002-11-29 22:16:52
desiato_hotblack@hotmail.com http://www.spew2.com/
If anything m0nty I would agree that having no choice to play would suck. I've done dialup for everything for a long time and DSL has only been in my life for a few years of that total, so I do remember the 400-pings and all. There were some quake and quake2 servers that would kick me off if my ping spiked, even though I had a pretty good average for dialup.

Pissed me off to no end.

The whole thing about microsoft is, they like doing what is safe. And if they can't get a convincing monetary-argument for getting support worldwide rolled out, then it isn't going to happen on the first iteration. However, there is hope if it turns out to be more profitable than expected that they would pursue more customers, and you'd have a presence in your country.

It won't matter anyway when we're all byte-capped. Rejoice, we imported one of Australia's finest means of making money in telecom. I have no idea what I'll do when they try it, either.

Just let me kill things online, that is all I ask.
#43 by ProStyle
2002-11-29 22:29:24
http://prostyle.deviantart.com
27 -
So if your broadband connection goes wrong and your without it for a month how would you feel is every CS server kicked you off for having a ping of 100+?

I'd totally understand and wouldn't even want to play with that much of a disadvantage (among other things).

I'm like a quote out of context...
#44 by Matt Davis
2002-11-29 22:30:55
http://looroll.com
It was a year ago I got DSL for the first time, I love it and wouldn't go back by choice, but its good to remember your roots on these things, considering how frustrating it is because so many people just don't understand what you go through with a modem.

Everyone in this room is now dumber for having heard it. God have mercy on your soul.
#45 by Squeaky
2002-11-29 23:33:18
I pity the foo' that's usin' dialup!

morn is our weekly special at an incredibly low price of $7
Pitiful DVD Collection
#46 by ProStyle
2002-11-30 01:05:59
http://prostyle.deviantart.com
what you go through with a modem.

Ahhh yes, I do remember my good old days in elementary school playing netquake TF, just about to capture the flag and win the match when all of a sudden (drumroll please) sister picks up the phone for the 3rd time in an hour of play. Dialup2win! I think I had that untill a bit after Quake2 came out, and I remember trying to download the 20 meg update over 4 days with a resuming program and then the next day getting it in 10 minutes on DSL and thinking to myself that there really is a god. Hah, how naive I was.....

I'm like a quote out of context...
#47 by Charles
2002-11-30 01:13:40
www.bluh.org
Quake...  Elementary School?...  

You are making me feel old, and I'm not even old!

#48 by Shadarr
2002-11-30 01:15:33
shadarr@yahoo.com http://digital-luddite.com
I remember playing Red Alert and my friend had some silly version of call waiting that couldn't be turned off, so we could only expect to complete a game after 10:00 and even then it would sometimes get interrupted.  We'd moved on to other games by the time broadband was an option, so we were rather surprised when we went to play it again that there was no TCP/IP option.
When they left it out of RA2 as well, we were just plain pissed.
#49 by Squeaky
2002-11-30 01:46:42
Quake came out in 96. I would've been in my first year of high school.

the first computer I ever used was a 386/33 with 16Mb of RAM. I never even saw a Commodore-64 until 1998 or so.

morn is our weekly special at an incredibly low price of $7
Pitiful DVD Collection
#50 by Bailey
2002-11-30 02:28:25
Ayep. Gaming on dialup just isn't worth doing, in my opinion. I feel for guys like m0nty that live in countries where computers are still coal-burning, and the words "fiber optic" confuse and enrage the natives.

Yeah, that's right. Your mother.
C O M M E N T S
Home » Topic: KvK in AC2: America, some of EU vs Rest Of The World

|«« - Previous Page - Next Page - »»|
P O S T   A   C O M M E N T

You need to be logged in to post a comment here. If you don't have an account yet, you can create one here. Registration is free.
C R A P T A G S
Simple formatting: [b]bold[/b], [i]italic[/i], [u]underline[/u]
Web Links: [url=www.mans.de]Cool Site[/url], [url]www.mans.de[/url]
Email Links: [email=some@email.com]Email me[/email], [email]some@email.com[/email]
Simple formatting: Quoted text: [quote]Yadda yadda[/quote]
Front Page (ATOM) • Submission Bin (2) • ArchivesUsersLoginCreate Account
You are currently not logged in.
There are currently 0 people browsing this site. [Details]