There have been a lot of bad ‘live service’ games being released lately. From Bethesda’s famously terrible Fallout 76 to EA’s own Anthem, it seems that more and more studios are willing to push out crappy, overhyped games and just kind of hope that they manage to fix it before all their players run off to do literally anything else. And it’s easy to see why this is a tempting system: the grandfather of this “method”, Hello Games’s No Man’s Sky, is now considered actually pretty damn good… so much so that fans have even bought an advertisement on the side of the road to issue their thanks for turning things around
So when Hello Games founder Sean Murray offers free advice for developers who made the same mistake as him, which he recently did during his keynote speech at this year’s Develop conference, they’d better take out a pen and some paper and write this down:
“We went about two years without talking to press at all….and we went about three months without saying anything to the community either. That was really hard. I sat down so many times and wrote the perfect blog post that was going to explain everything about the game’s development, and the road map going ahead. But I could see that it didn’t hold credibility with regards to where we were at.
There have been a number of games that have since come out, had a polarizing launch, and that explosive mix of loads of people playing it but also problems. And I can see EA, Microsoft, or Bethesda try to placate players by just talking to them, but for right or wrong, it just doesn’t really work. You see this all the time when a big publisher will talk to the community and try to solve the problem and then get embroiled, taking up more and more of its head space.”
You hear that, guys? Shut up and just work. If Hello Games can salvage No Man’s Sky, you can technically rescue Fallout 76. It won’t be easy, but hell: it’s almost the least you can do.