Very good and laid out letter. Signed.
Very good and laid out letter. Signed.
Avatar & Signature by Joar
Armatus and some of the others make some strong points. I can feel the depth of his particular dismay, and this, coming from someone as well respected as he is, should be taken very seriously by you, CA as a sign that people are losing patience, heart and hope for change. I can honestly say I have felt much the same way in the past. However, it is not in my character to give up because of meeting adversity. My discussions with other leading modders at this time is telling me they all feel the same way. Hence my call to action!
It speaks volumes reading the contents of this thread how thoughtful many of the community members are about these games, and how the logic they present does not stoop to needless negativity. We are talking constructive criticism here. Please take all that is written here as positive feedback.
While it is obvious to all that for many of us that we see the general development direction of the TW series in terms of moddability as an error, I can also say easily that at the same time there is a general feeling of wanting to be part of the solution.
CA- these voices care about you!
As Armatus clearly points out- eventually lack of any cognitive communication from CA ultimately is disheartening, and those with creativity to burn and a passion for modifications will ultimately give up and seek other directions and games/communities where their voices will be heard. No customer, whatever product you choose, in any business, wants to be ignored.
We will not be bought off with candy and a few prizes. Like all customers, we have a right to voice our opinions, especially when constructive, and we have a right to hear back in return, from someone who speaks with authority (no offense to you Lusted, but I think you know what I mean) and who gives us official recognition from Creative Assembly for these issues that we raise.
Here is a key point:
If for some reason CA no longer wishes that people modify their games, then as a company you should make a public announcement to that fact, and we can all walk away. I don’t ever intend to modify Super Mario, nor Final fantasy, and for good reason. But I was led to believe that with your games, I can. Are we wrong in this assumption?
Many of us believe that it is ok, in fact, it has even been used in your marketing strategy.
To say that modding somehow affects the fiscal benefits of releasing a new game every couple of years, I strongly disagree. I for one, still have all the TW series games, and still will probably go out and buy NTW. Modding can only promote it- you are breeding die hard fanatics. All mods require the person to buy the game! All mods want to be able to use the latest technology, the latest features.
A mod friendly NTW would spawn a slew of new versions: EB, RTR, Stainless Steel, etc etc etc, all seeking to take advantage of the realism that your engines provide.
A plain customer might buy your product once, but a die hard fan, you as a company, own for life!
I will compare your games once again with other more modder friendly games.
Only you yourselves can really know how your sales stack up against these companies, but I can hesitate to guess that your sales lag behind theirs, and for good reason. What makes these other game company’s games so appealing, is the dynamic that flows between their end users and their companies. Interaction. Energy. Group interest. Fostering an online presence beyond just one-way PR releases.
A commitment by you to excellence. Nothing is more inspiring to a customer!
As an example, if take a company- any company- that sells a product, which upon release includes a set of simple tools for the end user to use to modify within set and respected parameters, at their own risk ( if they wish), and those tools allow the end user to modify the game for a group of like minded enthusiasts, and I interact with that end user community in a cogent way, you are indeed creating something special and that you as a company can utilize.
a)You are creating a solid core fan base that will report back to you on their findings- this can only lead to better game performance, shorter research times when developing your “revolution/evolution cycle” and ultimately more sales $$$.
b)Need beta testers? As Pompey once said, “ I need only stamp my foot….” This would cut down lag time on bugs and glitches which….. we wont mention here….
c)You are developing in the end user a set of solid skills, which you, as a company with a long term future, can harvest as future employers.
d) It may spark your own in-house developers to (heaven forbid!) new creative heights if they know that others, with a passion that goes beyond receiving a salary from CA (!) are also pushing the envelope of performance.
Sewing seeds, harvesting the future….
As a professional businessman myself, also in the manufacturing business, I understand your fears of letting go, of trusting that the access you give your end users wont be abused. But- after ten years now of your games being released, has not the gaming community around your products shown you its worth? Of its respect for your games, and the parameters that you set?
The community polices itself, and will continue to do so, shunning all that seek to exploit or profit unfairly.
To sum up, the basis of all successful business relationships is trust. I believe, with all my heart and mind, that in ten years, we , the modding community, have shown we are worth of that trust.
Creative Assembly, I ask you to become a little bit braver with your future plans, for in bravery you risk only the greatest of rewards.
Enough for now. I will let your end users speak for themselves.
ps: If you require a person to communicate with Sega Japan and repeat these requests on behalf of your end users in Japanese, it would be my honor to do so. Having lived in Japan now for nine years and as the sole foreign staff member at my Japanese company, I have a deep understanding of the cultural issues and naturally conservative nature of Japanese business dealings. I also know that presented with a cogent customer request, they usually facilitate change if they see it as to the company’s benefit.
Supported and signed. Hopefully with the rewrite of their base code for NTW , they'll have the time and resources to put out some sort of mod tools. This statement emphatically clarifies our customer situation. I hope CA chews seriously on this issue.
*edit* You live in Japan? I live in Japan too! Where do you live? (just outside Yokohama here, Negishi to be precise)
Last edited by deeptrance83; February 08, 2010 at 02:52 AM.
I'm pessimistic but I am signing this too. The steps backwards in modding is a reason why I am not going to buy NTW for now, when since Rome I've pretty much bought every Total war game (Except Alexander ) as soon as it comes out. I would be happier with "Less steps forward and no steps back", then "less steps forward and more steps back", which is what ETW and I am worried NTW is shaping up to represent. The inability to edit or create new campaign maps is the most dramatic example of a step back I can think of, as was the difficulty of modders to be able to create new models (Even now it's rather difficult).
Until it's clear for me that NTW are friendlier to modding and that any future Total War Products are, I think it will be challenging to convince myself to purchase them.
Thanks MCM for the PM. So we shall sign here with a post?
Sure thing. Signed.
TWC Wiki: List of TW Modding Contributions 2005-2011
Release 12.2012: Third Age TW Realism+
Release 04.2013: Rise of the Samurai Realism+
LIVING ...WITH... WAR
What's really more disappointing than dis-information and non-education?
A certain degree of intentional ignorance paired with obvious stupidy /DV
Just needed a new signature lol. Any suggestions?
Thanks for the kinds words MCM, I think your reply was even more spot on and insightful than your petition. Though I can't imagine this isn't known at CA by now on some level. I think there's a serious disconnect between them and their fan base unfortunately. For what reasons... well we can only assume.
However, what is a game without fans? I have to question the reasoning behind the development of TW games, we so often hear what isn't feasible and what isn't marketable, but if the purpose is to sell to those who will play out a few battles or run through a campaign or two before shelving it for the next latest and greatest title then it should be clear where the intent is.
I believe as with the rest of you that the Total War communities (Not simply the official forum or the Org or TWC, but all combined have displayed lasting interest and should be considerable drivers of long term revenue. It may or may not compare to a big flashy release of a fresh title, but what is the focus? Fun? Fame? Sales? I hope it's for fun but I'm not so sure.
MCM has pinned it down the community is really the best free resource CA has. It's astonishing we're discussing this still after 10 years.
I'm in this petition because I was invited, I choose not to purchase empire after previously purchasing every other title (minus Alexander) over the years, in fact I've bought multiple as Christmas gifts for friends. Those very people who tried out the game and have since moved on. While the rest of us continue it's promotion out of our love for strategy and historical eras.
I would also be happy with:
But this too I can recall being said back in 2004. What can I say Kingdoms was my last Total War game. CA, please do surprise me for Total War VI if not though I have already moved on."Less steps forward and no steps back", then "less steps forward and more steps back"
Very well written, nice job! Hope this gets to the eyes and ears of Creative Assembly as it has mine.
Eloquent, intelligent, and level-headed.
Well done, MCM.
I love this series so much and still play all of the games (well, OK, Med 1 was a little boring). More importantly I buy them again if I loose the disks, buy them as presents for friends and co-workers (you should see the faces of 14 year old Japanese kids light up when they get to be Kenshin or Nobanaga and send out their hordes to fight!) and the reason I keep coming back and keep buying games is the mods that are available.
I played vanilla Rome TW for about 80 hours and gave up in disgust. There were just too many glaring inaccuracies to keep me interested. Enter Extended Greek Modified, downloaded at TWC. This was the first mod I ever played for any PC game. It was like chalk and cheese, a totally different experience.
While I can't mod myself, the strength of the modding community and the existing mods available has a very big impact on the games I buy.
In the last year I spent about $400 on PC games, and the one I've enjoyed the most was the Battlefield 1942 series. It was cheap and has a huge online and modding community. The huge toolkit that DICE included no doubt helps keep that community active.
Any support that CA could provide to the modders would be greatly appreciated.
"I'll tell you what rule sir....we applied Rule 303. We caught them and we shot them under RULE THREE OH THREE!"
"Shoot straight you bastards, don't make a mess of it!"
I will not be purchasing NTW. Once I experienced the "step back" of Empire I decided I would stick with the ME2 engine and will not move forward unless CA stands up for the modding community.
I will not buy a game that I cannot play.
If I cannot install or create mods then I'm not really playing a game I am merely being entertained for a few hours and then getting pissed that I waisted my money.
People who are pissed about spending cash as a general rule do not come back for seconds.
I will not be buying NTW, 90% of the features that NTW adds to the game ether A: Should have been in ETW to begin with or B: Was in a earlier TW game and then removed, like all the units having a uniqe skin like in MTW2, All my Brittish red coats have the same dumb face as all the French grey coats they just routed.
And if I might be so bold as to remind people about the "Steam" issue.
Signed. Well written letter friend. I will not be purchasing NTW either.
The CA is not a powerhouse of infinite proportions like the Federal Government or a top 500 corporation. They have to tactifully plan how they will spend their time. And time is money. As stated, they can either make mod tools or polish the game. My hope rests in them tweaking the game up to a couple of patches and then laying a couple of their programers on the issue of generating a base for the mod tools to give us. I believe this will be a major long term investment for their franchise. Which will out weight the initial cost of development with an almost endless free advertisment possibility.
Signed for what it's worth.
Having spent quite a lot of time in the TA:TW forum I can say with certainty that a good number of people bought M2/Kingdoms just so they could play that mod and some of them were even new arrivals to the TW franchise. Can you read between the lines and see the words "potential new customer"?
And this is true for quite a few other high profile mods. There's thousands of people on youtube watching mod trailers or gameplay vids and asking "what game is this?".
So you know...ka-ching!
As a TWC modder who has worked on four mods so far, this gets my wholehearted support.
Αρχιεπισκοπή Θυατείρων και Μεγάλης Βρεττανίας - Archdiocese of Thyateira and Great Britain
Under the patronage of therussian
Here Here!, Signed ~ Marshal Beale
Formally known as 'Marshal Beale' - The Creator the Napoleon TW mods - 'Napoleon Order of War' and 'Revolution Order of War'
Here, Here! Signed - Yoda Twin
Minister for Home Affairs of the Commonwealth v Zentai  HCA 28 per Heydon J at 
Analysis should not be diverted by reflections upon the zeal with which the victors at the end of the Second World War punished the defeated for war crimes. The victors were animated by the ideals of the Atlantic Charter and of the United Nations. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was about to peep over the eastern horizon. But first, they wanted a little hanging.
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