I am Jack’s Total Lack of Surprise
Posted by Corelin
I wasn’t going to write on this story. I didn’t feel I had much to say, and I might come off badly. You see, I can be a bit cold-hearted at times. I don’t mean anything in this post to in any way demean the suffering the affected employees of the CCP layoffs are going through.
That said, my ego and my voice demand that I do say a few things.
We knew this was coming. All the signs were there. The leaky raft was cruising into a hurricane. Myself and other bloggers even called attention to it. CCPs weak financial state has been common knowledge for a long time. Their efforts to raise money have varied from the Noble Exchange with its wildly overpriced items, to the bulk sale of Plexes, which is really just a decision to mortgage the future to pay for today, to, finally, firing staff. Even the people fired weren’t terribly surprising. Community Relations has hardly been CCPs strong point. In fact for most of the summer they were dealing with a customer base in what could mildly be called a riot. If the Occupy crowd were as vocal and destructive as the capsuleers the national guard would have been called in.
Now this isn’t entirely the community relations staff’s fault. In fact nearly all the blame should fall on the higher leaders. CCP Zulu’s name comes SCREAMING to the fore in fact. He laid the explosives, set and lit the fuse, that led to the devastating events of the summer. However he’s probably too senior. At the same time the Community Relations team has been tainted by failure. In the US no Presidential Candidate who has ever lost a race has won a later one. In fact most never even get nominated. Americans love winners. Whether it was their fault or not these guys lost. That the game was rigged, unfair and unwinnable doesn’t count. What counts is they lost. Fallout is one of the VERY few people I get on twitter to check out, he will be missed. Community Relations played Cumberland College to the fans Georgia Tech and their “Coach” Zulu went full bore batshit crazy.
So now they are gone, they will be missed. I suspect they will be back, in part or in whole. Companies tend to overreact, sometimes several times, before coming to an equilibrium between junking an ineffective team and keeping enough of it’s core for continuity. I doubt Fallout would be one of the ones returning. He has been too visible for too long. Hammer might be more likely, or Valar.
What does this mean to players? Well it might have some salutary effects actually. Communications will be less filtered certainly, less polished most likely, and the higher ups will be more likely to spend time posting it themselves. They may not have cut their pay, but Hilmar and Arnar will have to act directly with the community on a more regular basis. In addition, with over 120 members of their team cut, CCP has had to admit that it is time to focus on what makes them profitable and make it better, not work on pie-in-the-sky dreams of projects that are YEARS from fruition. If some good and valuable people have been cut, other people who were perhaps not so good, and not so valuable have also found themselves sitting on the couch in their pajamas, working on their resumes. Check your spelling people. You do not want to send out over 60 resumes with a word spelled wrong on your header. Trust me on this.
So CCP is leaner, hopefully meaner, and presumably more focused. Will this result in a better EvE experience? I hope so. EvE has 2 months until SW:TOR comes out. It has 61 days to solidify its player base and convince people to stick with it. They are promising a lot, we will see how they deliver.