How much should players know?

So you are like totally addicted to this MMO (used to be RPG at the end of that) and you find yourself getting 2 hours of sleep, forgotten the name of your dog so you call him Frodo and if you miss another day at work your boss will tell your coworkers that one time when he stopped by your house found in that compromising position with umm your avatar. You my dear are a fan, addict or the one game companies like the most because you pay them diligently or dislike the most because you play so much that they can’t keep up with the content required to keep you playing so much. Either way, you’re their number one fan.

You have entered the addicted zone.

Players want to know what is going on with their precious addiction. The question is, how much do they need to know?

For example, most of the time when there is a major exploit the Devs will go into ninja mode and penetrate the exploit with their little keyboard armies and the player base is none the wiser – of course those that enjoyed the exploit know but who are they going to tell? They will be slaughtered on the message boards. Cheater! I can hear the cries now. Wah.

The Developers love the game (well most of them I hope!), the players love the game (most of them I hope!) and anything that goes on with the game is important to all facets of the equation. This is where it gets touchy. As Community specialists our job is to tell the players what is going on and if budget allows to give them a bunch of shiney stuff to wear. Swag. is. good. I like swag too. The thing is, if we tell the fan base:

– Fixed an exploit that allowed players to climb up on the zone wall and urinate freely killing players below. (I swear I hope that never happens.)

This would be the response:

Player A:

About friggin’ time, you know how many times I got killed by the pee while afk?

Player B:

I hate exploiters, all exploiters need a perma banning!

Player C:

lol, that bug still exists? I haven’t played the game in 2 years and I remember doing that!

Player D:

<silence>

<scratches chin>

<ponders where it would be fun to try and urinate on players>

After spending weeks they find a spot that was missed and next thing you know he/she is giggling uncontrollably.

Player E:

<scratches something>

<Thinks: Hmm if that used to work over there, then it’s very possible that I use this spell with the right timing I could do amazing things and no one could catch me.>

Okay, I can continue but why don’t you folks come up with other versions? :)

So the next time you see a mini patch go in and scratch your head in bewilderment because there are no notes – we are protecting you and the integrity of the game. Oh and from dangling the apple in front of possible weak addicts who just want to win. Or have fun their way…more on that later.

In other news, this website though not very popular yet surely made a big hit with the spammers. If anyone needs links to helping Mr. Winky I can forward you a couple of links.

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