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A message regarding reported layoffs at CCP

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Author
TheGunslinger42
All Web Investigations
#161 - 2014-06-06 14:51:56 UTC
Naomi Hale wrote:
Reading the Gurdian article, not really sure you can think of CCP as the black sheep of game developement.

I used to share an office with a guy, he was designing the lead character for a game. He'd done dozens of facial concepts at the behest of the game's director, change the jaw line, different eyebrows, that sort of thing. One day, after weeks of work, the director comes in looks at the concepts and says "Make him look more edgy!" The guy ask what he meant by "edgy" to which the director simply replied "you know, Edgy!" and walked off.

This director had one other game under his belt (a poorly received one), dozens of complaints against him and people had left the company over having to work with him yet management kept him on, I never found out why. Company went bust about four years later.

My point (if there is one) is that management in games companies never seems to explain themselves to the rank and file, which leads to resentment over how thngs are run. It's not just CCP.


Anyone in any part of the tech industry will know someone like Mr Psssshhh or Mr "you know, Edgy!". They're always non-tech-y people, whether they're higher levels of management, or sales people, or whatever. They throw around and demand the vaguest of buzzwords and then vanish or go silent when someone asks for some specifics or clarity.

Then when it hits the fan, they're kept on while the techies are booted, because vague buzzwords and platitudes sound more impressive to the big bosses than the tech people asking for specifics, clarifications, etc.

This short sketch is all too real http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKorP55Aqvg
JC Anderson
RED ROSE THORN
#162 - 2014-06-06 14:58:33 UTC
XxRTEKxX wrote:
I dont pay much attention to who is who in CCP. However, if ccp still has the same CEO who was CEO back during Incarna, then there is something seriously wrong at CCP. That CEO should have stepped down a long time ago and someome else should be at the helm.


Same guy at the top indeed.
JC Anderson
RED ROSE THORN
#163 - 2014-06-06 15:01:32 UTC  |  Edited by: JC Anderson
TheGunslinger42 wrote:
Naomi Hale wrote:
Reading the Gurdian article, not really sure you can think of CCP as the black sheep of game developement.

I used to share an office with a guy, he was designing the lead character for a game. He'd done dozens of facial concepts at the behest of the game's director, change the jaw line, different eyebrows, that sort of thing. One day, after weeks of work, the director comes in looks at the concepts and says "Make him look more edgy!" The guy ask what he meant by "edgy" to which the director simply replied "you know, Edgy!" and walked off.

This director had one other game under his belt (a poorly received one), dozens of complaints against him and people had left the company over having to work with him yet management kept him on, I never found out why. Company went bust about four years later.

My point (if there is one) is that management in games companies never seems to explain themselves to the rank and file, which leads to resentment over how thngs are run. It's not just CCP.


Anyone in any part of the tech industry will know someone like Mr Psssshhh or Mr "you know, Edgy!". They're always non-tech-y people, whether they're higher levels of management, or sales people, or whatever. They throw around and demand the vaguest of buzzwords and then vanish or go silent when someone asks for some specifics or clarity.

Then when it hits the fan, they're kept on while the techies are booted, because vague buzzwords and platitudes sound more impressive to the big bosses than the tech people asking for specifics, clarifications, etc.

This short sketch is all too real http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKorP55Aqvg


After Incarna it was the community reps and those sort of people that were let go. ;) Was a month + a week or so before Xmas if I remember correctly.
Gully Alex Foyle
The Scope
Gallente Federation
#164 - 2014-06-06 15:01:50 UTC
TheGunslinger42 wrote:
This short sketch is all too real http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKorP55Aqvg
That's just awesome. +1

Make space glamorous! Is EVE dying or not? Ask the EVE-O Death-o-meter!

Jake Rivers
New Planetary Order
#165 - 2014-06-06 15:02:26 UTC
Laying off CCP Xhagen certainly takes away some of the meaning of handing out those 10 year swords.

Did it get traded in for a gold watch?

Who is CCP going to find now with enough guts to fly across the theater at Harpa on flimsy wires?
JC Anderson
RED ROSE THORN
#166 - 2014-06-06 15:05:52 UTC
Jake Rivers wrote:
Laying off CCP Xhagen certainly takes away some of the meaning of handing out those 10 year swords.

Did it get traded in for a gold watch?

Who is CCP going to find now with enough guts to fly across the theater at Harpa on flimsy wires?


Watch... Nobody will want to earn the dev spotlight anymore. ;) Bad omens after the last one just got laid off less than a month later. ;)
Alayna Le'line
#167 - 2014-06-06 15:09:04 UTC
JC Anderson wrote:
Jake Rivers wrote:
Laying off CCP Xhagen certainly takes away some of the meaning of handing out those 10 year swords.

Did it get traded in for a gold watch?

Who is CCP going to find now with enough guts to fly across the theater at Harpa on flimsy wires?


Watch... Nobody will want to earn the dev spotlight anymore. ;) Bad omens after the last one just got laid off less than a month later. ;)


No-one will want to write them anymore either, since the writer got laid off too! :P
Alayna Le'line
#168 - 2014-06-06 15:09:57 UTC
Gully Alex Foyle wrote:
Tippia wrote:
Gully Alex Foyle wrote:
The Guardian couldn't honestly accuse Mr. Petursson of being out of touch and/or arrogant, so they let Mr. Blood do it instead! Lol While providing objectively weak but 'sensational' evidence about it.
How else would they have done it and still be journalists rather than CCP employees?

The TL;DR of The Guardian's article is: 'WoD was not flawlessly managed'. Which we already know, else in all probability it wouldn't have been cancelled after 9 years and a good bunch of people would still have thier jobs.

The rest, including the 'apology letter' story is just sensationalism, which I agree with you that is many journalists' bread and butter, but I don't really find it interesting.


I consider "not perfectly managed" to be quite the understatement if even half of what is in that article is true.
Hevymetal
POT Corp
#169 - 2014-06-06 15:15:57 UTC
o7

Here is wishing you all the best of luck. Thanks for what you did for all of us.
Jake Rivers
New Planetary Order
#170 - 2014-06-06 15:16:06 UTC
Alayna Le'line wrote:
JC Anderson wrote:
Jake Rivers wrote:
Laying off CCP Xhagen certainly takes away some of the meaning of handing out those 10 year swords.

Did it get traded in for a gold watch?

Who is CCP going to find now with enough guts to fly across the theater at Harpa on flimsy wires?


Watch... Nobody will want to earn the dev spotlight anymore. ;) Bad omens after the last one just got laid off less than a month later. ;)


No-one will want to write them anymore either, since the writer got laid off too! :P


Oh hell, I missed that part too, bleh.
Gully Alex Foyle
The Scope
Gallente Federation
#171 - 2014-06-06 15:28:29 UTC
Alayna Le'line wrote:
I consider "not perfectly managed" to be quite the understatement if even half of what is in that article is true.
Meh, the article described pretty common mistakes.

Companies succeed while making worse mistakes, and fail while doing most things right.

It's often pretty hard to judge even when you're inside the company.

Make space glamorous! Is EVE dying or not? Ask the EVE-O Death-o-meter!

flakeys
Doomheim
#172 - 2014-06-06 15:40:40 UTC
TheGunslinger42 wrote:
Naomi Hale wrote:
Reading the Gurdian article, not really sure you can think of CCP as the black sheep of game developement.

I used to share an office with a guy, he was designing the lead character for a game. He'd done dozens of facial concepts at the behest of the game's director, change the jaw line, different eyebrows, that sort of thing. One day, after weeks of work, the director comes in looks at the concepts and says "Make him look more edgy!" The guy ask what he meant by "edgy" to which the director simply replied "you know, Edgy!" and walked off.

This director had one other game under his belt (a poorly received one), dozens of complaints against him and people had left the company over having to work with him yet management kept him on, I never found out why. Company went bust about four years later.

My point (if there is one) is that management in games companies never seems to explain themselves to the rank and file, which leads to resentment over how thngs are run. It's not just CCP.


Anyone in any part of the tech industry will know someone like Mr Psssshhh or Mr "you know, Edgy!". They're always non-tech-y people, whether they're higher levels of management, or sales people, or whatever. They throw around and demand the vaguest of buzzwords and then vanish or go silent when someone asks for some specifics or clarity.

Then when it hits the fan, they're kept on while the techies are booted, because vague buzzwords and platitudes sound more impressive to the big bosses than the tech people asking for specifics, clarifications, etc.

This short sketch is all too real http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKorP55Aqvg



If you think that only happends in the tech industry you're verry wrong.Every company big or small has a jackass knowitall who knows nothing and shouldn't even have a job to start with.

That said every company needs some PShhhhhhhhhhhh

We are all born ignorant, but one must work hard to remain stupid.

Tippia
Sunshine and Lollipops
#173 - 2014-06-06 15:51:43 UTC
flakeys wrote:
If you think that only happends in the tech industry you're verry wrong.Every company big or small has a jackass knowitall who knows nothing and shouldn't even have a job to start with.

That said every company needs some PShhhhhhhhhhhh

It's even a solid business model for some.
Pine Marten
Doomheim
#174 - 2014-06-06 16:02:23 UTC
So the employees that fled ccp to go to league of legends saw the writing on the wall huh? That was a bit ago too.
JC Anderson
RED ROSE THORN
#175 - 2014-06-06 16:21:23 UTC  |  Edited by: JC Anderson
Pine Marten wrote:
So the employees that fled ccp to go to league of legends saw the writing on the wall huh? That was a bit ago too.


There have been others that went to Riot since the ones you are talking about, and more recently. Though I was mostly sad about a select few of them. :(
Alphea Abbra
Project Promethion
#176 - 2014-06-06 16:39:38 UTC
I'm deeply disturbed by this, and the attempt to write it off as "in publishing" is horrifying.
I hope CCP survives, but I think it would be better for you all if next time, layoffs happened in management.

Best of luck to those laid off.
Deacon Abox
Black Eagle5
Villore Accords
#177 - 2014-06-06 16:53:23 UTC  |  Edited by: Deacon Abox
Not surprising. Acquiring WoD was a good move. And I would have played that game (and no I'm not a rp-er even though I'm currently in FW). WoD was something new and different like EVE.

But then they quickly jumped to make DUST. WTF, just another FPS, that's what you want to invest inWhat? Who really couldn't tell that that market was already flooded with products and that that gaming culture is not made of year over year loyalty? No surprise it is in the crapper already.

When they started **** canning people and projects at WoD for increased investment of dev hours and resources for DUST it was 180 degrees the wrong move. Now we have Valkyrie, and wtf is project Legion, sucking resources? I don't even know what Legion is. Doesn't matter.

Valkyrie and DUST are not projects ahead of the curve. WoD is/was. And there would be a sizable/loyal player base to draw on if it were even halfway decently playable.

And what management is greenlighting pet projects that aren't being demanded by the customer base? For example: the wonderful world of loot spew (at least this one finally removed), unfinished unified inventory (got fixed after much consternation), nauseating gate jumps, annoying autoscanning, incredibly informative and not at all intrusive tooltips. What next will you forcefeed us thinking it somehow is improving the game? Psssssshhhhhhhhh

Yes, management needs to cut its own pay and/or layoff itself. But that is not how capitalism works. So I suppose let the corporate death spiral begin. I'm sure the folks at the top will eek out a couple more years of bonus and stock option jackpots while continually laying off line workers and/or reducing their pay. Party on dudes Ugh

CCP, there are off buttons for ship explosions, missile effects, turret effects, etc. "Immersion" does not seem to be harmed by those. So, [u]please[/u] give us a persisting off button for the jump gate and autoscan visuals.

Antihrist Pripravnik
Scorpion Road Industry
#178 - 2014-06-06 17:11:52 UTC  |  Edited by: Antihrist Pripravnik
Nami Kumamato wrote:
CCP is first and foremost a company -deal with it.
Second their product occupies a niche in the market - therefore not insane profit.
Although I'm not seeing " EVE is dying!" - seeing the moves from their part in recent months it looks like they are shifting back to the small-team structure. Which is a very good plan. They should reduce their efforts to EVE, EVE: Valkyrie and EVE: Legion, trying to create a centralized system. CCP has spread too much for a company that get's it's profits 90% out of a subscription.
If EVE: Valkyrie and EVE: Legion have at least moderate success 49 people will get a job at CCP.

If the subscription fee will go up THEN you can start shitting your pants.


This.^^

And by the way, why is there so much hate towards CCP among the players in this thread? I really don't understand. If the reason for layoffs is true, and that is to focus strictly on development of EVE IP, that's completely OK. The company tried to spread focus but obviously bit slightly bigger bite than they can chew. Realizing that fact and switching dedication to products that do make money (and always have been) is a sign of a healthy company and certainly not the opposite. Companies that do fail are the ones that don't realize that they are shooting way over they heads without solid ground to back them up, which obviously isn't the case with CCP now.

But I understand that there is some sort of a sadistic desire by some of the forum trolls for CCP to fail. This can be seen even in every single new feature or change to the game that is introduced since Crucible. Every single feature or change had its own "Omg this is terrible. Revert this [insert insulting adjective] like right now!!11!!!", even for features that were long awaited and desired by a huge majority of players for years.

I have been in EVE since "Red Moon Rising" and have been following these forums and the community (EN24, TheMittani, Kugu, failheap, subreddits, player blogs,...) all the time and I can say that CCP bashing and these types of trolls were not that present before Incarna. After Incarna, it became FOTM to bash every step that CCP makes in or out of the game. This is allowed because CCP is one of the few companies that actually do care about your opinion as a customer and allows you to post any criticism including negative, especially since what happened in Incarna. This is abused to hell and back by some players to the point where it became ridiculous.

After Incarna and huge amount of negative feedback along with the big hit to CCP as a company, CCP has dedicated never to make the same mistake of not listening to player feedback again. The process of introduction of new features and changes is now:
- Create a topic by a dev responsible for the changes in the "Features & ideas" discussion;
- After feedback, come up with the working version of the feature/change and publish it in a devblog specifically stating that it's a WIP;
- Gather more feedback in the devblog thread;
- Refine the feature/change some more according to the feedback;
- Publish new devblog if necessary;
- Publish patch notes about the change and link both the F&I thread and devblog(s);

Is this the sign of "bad management"? Is this a sign of "bad state of CCP as a company"? Is this a sign of "CCP/EVE is dying"?

I don't think so. Company who don't only listens but dedicates itself to actively discussing their product(s) with customers does not look like it's on the road of failure.

And I don't even want to start talking about an article from "The Guardian". Credibility of articles in The Guardian is like credibility Kim Jong-il writing about western culture - they are partially true and can sound reasonable for brainwashed masses, but are ultimately written for their own interests and some details are over-amplified to make the whatever the point the author wanted. I'm not going deeper into politics, but politicians in the UK haven't yet gone over the way Iceland defended themselves from a banking fraud that was the cause of 2008. global economic crisis. That might be enough reason to dig, over-amplify or even fabricate (it certainly wouldn't be Guardian's first time) dirty stuff about an Icelandic company.
Anna Karhunen
Inoue INEXP
#179 - 2014-06-06 18:11:26 UTC
Tippia wrote:
flakeys wrote:
If you think that only happends in the tech industry you're verry wrong.Every company big or small has a jackass knowitall who knows nothing and shouldn't even have a job to start with.

That said every company needs some PShhhhhhhhhhhh

It's even a solid business model for some.

Management by Björk?

As my old maths teacher used to say: "Statistics are like bikinis: It's what they don't show that's interesting". -CCP Aporia

Sexy Cakes
Have A Seat
#180 - 2014-06-06 18:25:59 UTC  |  Edited by: ISD Ezwal
Antihrist Pripravnik wrote:

This.^^

And by the way, why is there so much hate towards CCP among the players in this thread? I really don't understand. If the reason for layoffs is true, and that is to focus strictly on development of EVE IP, that's completely OK. The company tried to spread focus but obviously bit slightly bigger bite than they can chew. Realizing that fact and switching dedication to products that do make money (and always have been) is a sign of a healthy company and certainly not the opposite. Companies that do fail are the ones that don't realize that they are shooting way over they heads without solid ground to back them up, which obviously isn't the case with CCP now.

But I understand that there is some sort of a sadistic desire by some of the forum trolls for CCP to fail. This can be seen even in every single new feature or change to the game that is introduced since Crucible. Every single feature or change had its own "Omg this is terrible. Revert this [insert insulting adjective] like right now!!11!!!", even for features that were long awaited and desired by a huge majority of players for years.

I have been in EVE since "Red Moon Rising" and have been following these forums and the community (EN24, TheMittani, Kugu, failheap, subreddits, player blogs,...) all the time and I can say that CCP bashing and these types of trolls were not that present before Incarna. After Incarna, it became FOTM to bash every step that CCP makes in or out of the game. This is allowed because CCP is one of the few companies that actually do care about your opinion as a customer and allows you to post any criticism including negative, especially since what happened in Incarna. This is abused to hell and back by some players to the point where it became ridiculous.

After Incarna and huge amount of negative feedback along with the big hit to CCP as a company, CCP has dedicated never to make the same mistake of not listening to player feedback again. The process of introduction of new features and changes is now:
- Create a topic by a dev responsible for the changes in the "Features & ideas" discussion;
- After feedback, come up with the working version of the feature/change and publish it in a devblog specifically stating that it's a WIP;
- Gather more feedback in the devblog thread;
- Refine the feature/change some more according to the feedback;
- Publish new devblog if necessary;
- Publish patch notes about the change and link both the F&I thread and devblog(s);

Is this the sign of "bad management"? Is this a sign of "bad state of CCP as a company"? Is this a sign of "CCP/EVE is dying"?

I don't think so. Company who don't only listens but dedicates itself to actively discussing their product(s) with customers does not look like it's on the road of failure.

And I don't even want to start talking about an article from "The Guardian". Credibility of articles in The Guardian is like credibility Kim Jong-il writing about western culture - they are partially true and can sound reasonable for brainwashed masses, but are ultimately written for their own interests and some details are over-amplified to make the whatever the point the author wanted. I'm not going deeper into politics, but politicians in the UK haven't yet gone over the way Iceland defended themselves from a banking fraud that was the cause of 2008. global economic crisis. That might be enough reason to dig, over-amplify or even fabricate (it certainly wouldn't be Guardian's first time) dirty stuff about an Icelandic company.


The reason people are so upset is that we support CCP directly by paying to play this game and hearing about another bunch of worker bee's getting treated poorly and then canned by ignorant and arrogant executives that you are paying to support makes a rational person angry.

*Snip* Please refrain from personal attacks. ISD Ezwal.

When qualified, hard working people start leaving for no real apparent reason it signals that something is wrong with the higher-ups. Good people don't stay around in a dysfunctional company. Now another round of layoffs and this guardian article hits. I'm not one to run around like chicken little but when Fozzie and Rise leave CCP is officially in the crapper.

And for the record, the unified inventory and loot spew were terrible mechanics and players gave CCP over 50 pages of feedback explaining how horrible it was but it made it in the game anyway so don't act like they are the poster-boys of heeding player feedback.

Not today spaghetti.