05-25-2010, 11:06 AM
I had a heated discussion today with a colleague at work about the merits of the Social Media age (twitter and facebook to be precise). What struck me was a comment made by my erstwhile non-gaming colleague about the potential knock-on effects (which may already be apparent) that this might have on the gaming community.
Being a non-twitter fan myself, has anyone been 'tweeting' about Thief 4, and if so what has been said? These forums offer us a place to discuss (haha, ok debate) all things Thief, but what kind of effect does/could such tools have on the game? For instance, 20'000 tweets on the 'no multiplayer' for instance?? Any ideas?
05-25-2010, 11:52 AM
As someone who lives in an area with no mobile coverage (and also bafflement as to the appeal of either facebook or twitter) I automatically think that these will have no effect.
But I could be and probably am wrong, although I would be interested to see what form this would take.
I know that the general manger of EM twitters and I think it might have been a tweet that broke the news about a new Community manger.
From what I've seen, only the rare fan page and merest mention exist outside of the forums, the interviews, the comments following the interviews, and the official sites of individuals and companies involved with creating the game. The comments following interviews and on the fan pages are much like we see here on the boards, but with some who are not a part of the fan forum communities. Since I'm one of a small group of fans who search the 'Net weekly or daily for whispers of Thief 4, but who is not a part of Twitter, and only somewhat involved with Facebook, I don't see very much "out there", and certainly nothing even close to what's being said on the forums. The full spectrum of gamers and non-gamers, merely aware of Thief or intimately familiar, are represented but only in a tiny fraction. There are some really loud ignorant people on the sites involved with voting for best or favorite games/player characters/villains who talk ridiculous smack to reduce a game's votes.
At this time, games like Mobsters, Mafia Wars, and Farmville and Bejeweled don't seem to be a threat, but I would expect the online multiplayer game developers to be taking heavy notes. With Facebook, though, having a friend's gaming stats and unlocked achievements posted to my Wall is extreme spam, as it can fill up the page, and half the postings are requests to join the game by helping my friends, and it takes a little hacking to turn that off, or removing the friend from the friends list. Not very sociable in that respect.
05-25-2010, 12:45 PM
With Facebook, though, having a friend's gaming stats and unlocked achievements posted to my Wall is extreme spam, as it can fill up the page, and half the postings are requests to join the game by helping my friends, and it takes a little hacking to turn that off, or removing the friend from the friends list. Not very sociable in that respect.
This something that I whole heartedly agree with. I do not want mediums such as Twitter and Facebook being used as tools to propagate (at the most extreme view point) the selling points of PS3 and XBOX - online 'stats'. OK, im a Football Manager fan so I am not adversed to stats, but having them forced into my faced every time I log-on is not a 'plus point'.
Thief is perhaps the only game that actually have a sense of care for, and as such it is always interesting to see what might exist in this established 'social media market'. A few years ago, comments were restricted to forums and consumer magazine 'write ins'. I remember reading Kieran Gillen's reveiw of Thief 2 in PC Gamer - anyone remember the 'cheats section'? It used to be a gold-mine of erstwhile unknown in game cheats. No we live in an age where such things are well posted, it seems that the only thing that is not readily accesible is the 'majority' view, something that seems hard to find even on these forums. Polls work to some extent but they are usually focused on one area - they do not focus on (for example) multi-player, third view and climbing cloves views.
And then there's the unknown of how the views of forum members and geeks compare to those who either have no interest in joining a community or are technologically limited and don't know we're here. Would they show the same biases, or would there be a unique perspective untapped here?
There are majority and minority views of the posts, but you have to read everything for months for it to become apparent. Quantifying it is impossible, though, only because no one has the frikkin' time or inclination to even attempt it, let alone see it through. :p
05-25-2010, 01:40 PM
Very true! Which raises numerous questions: Do developers have time to analyse and aggregate the views posted here? What about other sites (for instance TTLG), what about non-represented users? This has particular relevance given the target driven and sales related performance of contemporary releases. How much utility therefore lies in releasing a product that meets the aggregate requirements of the forums etc. when there is a potential majority that is unrepresented? Do the forums relay the expectations of (at the end of the day) the majority consumer?
I think these are a slice of target consumerism. I'd dare say that the majority view does lean more toward mass-market trends. I admit I feel my enjoyment of Thief 4 is threatened for all the trendy ideas being touted and pleaded for for the next title. Since the core team of 20 devs has been reading the forums since before this one here was started, I'm sure they read enough to get the general flavor of the dedicated and ultra-geeky segment, among whom even major trends are being pushed for T4. Most of my personal disagreements come from knowing how the current industry mass-marketed norms will negatively affect the very things I love about Thief and the very reasons I like Thief more than any other series. I do feel confident, though, that if T4 distinguishes itself from the trilogy, and does not borrow heavily from the creative pool found only in the older titles, I will have no problem not buying the game or ever playing it. I only fight hard now, until I know the fight no longer matters.
05-30-2010, 08:43 PM
more to the point, in the new game, should garrett by jumping online each day and changing his facebook status to "just stole the horn of quintus from the bonehoard", and if so, who would he have as friends on his profile :)
Garrett's "Friends", set to Private on Facebook--the rest are dead or unnamed or untrusted or better to keep at a distance, heh heh:
Basso & Jenivere, Sangar, Zhan, Carmen Cantata, Inspector H. Drept, Rudyard, Manny Jabrielle, Dikket, Tundis, and, uh, maybe Basso's sister...
The full list of Garrett's social contacts, who were good contacts, or willingly helped him to whatever degree, including those who the player can choose to not take the patch of action that creates the positive connection, are as follows:
Basso & Jenivere and Basso's sister, Artemus & Keeper Nate, Carmen Cantata, Sangar, Farkus, Rudyard, Zhan, Manny Jabrielle, Cutty, Dikket, Tundis, Issyt the Beggar, possibly Felix, the person in the briefing buying the Horn of Quintus from Garrett, Viktoria, Downwinders, Giry, Brothers Murus & Renault, Hammerites, Inspector Drept, Lauryl, Sammy, Lotus, Heartless Perry, Black Market Bertha, Thomas, Dahlia, Marla Madison, Ramien, Sam Swarthy, Dyan, Widow Moira and Curtis.
Break from Cragscleft Prison, Briefing: "An associate of mine was confined there, and has provided me with a map."
Break from Cragscleft Prison, Store item, M3HolyWaterTip: "A former prisoner of Cragscleft says he has info about \ the haunted mines. Cost:100"
Break from Cragscleft Prison, M3cellblocktip, which reads: "According to Dikket, a 'heretic' who was recently let out of Cragscleft, Cutty's being held in cell block four."
The Thieves' Guild, briefing: "I have a rough map of the complex I got from...'sources' from the inside. ... Have to be careful—the Downwinder's know me all too well."
The Haunted Cathedral, Store item, M7TIP2: "An acquaintance is willing to sell you some pages from a \ journal that he claims belonged to a long-ago fighter of the undead. \ Cost: 200"
The Mage Towers, briefing: "I bribed some servants to get me a map of the common grounds..."
Lost City , Store item, M9TIP2: "An acquaintance [Sangar] will sell you a commission he has to \ pick up some antiquities which you may be able to find around the Lost \ City. Cost:150"
Song of the Caverns, briefing: "An informant of mine, Giry, made a home for himself in these caverns after he lost his job tending the ticket counter of a nearby opera house."
The Maw of Chaos, Store item, M14TIP2: "One of the Hammerites is willing to offer you some \ information he found, but insists that you pay for it - something \ about not sullying his soul by helping thieves. Cost:100"
Shipping... and Receiving, maybe the one who offered M02TIP.
Framed, maybe the one who wrote M04TIP1.
Framed, briefing: "...my visitor said the job was too sensitive to go through the usual channels. He claimed that an old acquaintance of mine told him where to find me. I was about to ask him who our mutual friend was, when he managed to... distract me."
Blackmail, M09TIP: "I hear the foundation under the porch of Truart Estate has a large crack which you should be able to crawl under. Check behind the bushes for it. There must be an easy way into the mansion under there. \ -Tundis"
First City Bank & Trust, Store item, M07B12: "G - \ Tried me a creak at First City B&T come two years back. More than I \ was skopped out for, tell you that, not my best o jobs. Had me a left \ little finger afore that, for one. Trouble be, the place spents a \ full purse on the damned TILE floors. Couldn't take a step back nor \ fort, should I set an echo up to the roof. Had me a dram more o \ nerve, mights have gone slow-feet enough and get by, or wait \ patientlike till the thugmen be past. But no, had me to go and raise \ a noise on that tile and out they jump. No worry for you, mate, \ all your talents. But for me, well, get me a coin and prick your \ ears samewise, seems a fair trade. \ -Zhan"
Life of the Party, Store item, M11B14: "A local merchant [Rudyard] may not have the items you need, \ but he does know where you can obtain them. Cost: 200"
Life of the Party, Store item, M11B15, which reads: "G, \ Got some news for ya. A guy named Valencia just entered Dayport, and he's only there for a couple of days. He's some kinda diamond exporter...deals with rough stones. Well, while he's in town, he's storing a pouch of uncut diamonds at the Dayport Trader's Bank. Security there is supposed to be pretty loose -- hell, the place is on the top floor of one of them marble buildings, so they must not expect any company, if you know what I mean. Should be fairly straightforward, if you take the 'thieves' highway.'"
Precious Cargo Objectives: "A smuggler friend has commissioned you with finding and stealing the man's antique navigation globe."
Anyway, so far, the social media outside the forums seems really limited for speaking up and gathering opinion, if there's not a system set up like the news channels with voicemails and emails for people to chime in, and the public is not privy to the actual inflow of information, only the chosen outflow shared with us.
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