Flash Point 33: Nutless Monkeys and Lightwhips

This week we have an extra co-host, our own Tim Gow, who writes our weekly Fleet Pass column. Aside from some Diablo 3 tangents, we talk plenty of SWTOR, with 1.3 speculation and subscriber numbers not surprisingly dominating.

Points of discussion:
– Drop in subscriber numbers
– BioWare layoffs / Stephen Reid’s departure
– 1.3 conjecture
– Lore Update: Light Sabers!
– Random Diablo 3 chat
– Fleet Pass Column – what would you like to see from now on?
– Shout outs for our forums, Facebook page, Oceanic Guild listing, Google Plus page and Twitter account

Listen via iTunes or right here:

Comments

  1. Good one mates. I especially enjoyed the discussion of the lay offs.

  2. Ninjamike0804 says:

    I like how u touch on internet hatres(doomsayers) what did people expect? 50 endgame vaults and fps at launch? There are a few endgame missions and the hard/nightmare modes are challanging. Is it complete? No. Is it broken? No. It may be hard but the content is out there go do it. You can find what intrests u as a player by lvl 50 . Ifs its not fps or pvp then it may b story but people are afraid to start new toons but when I did it I found it very enjoyable and interesting. Plus u get the buff stack on other tions when u get to chapter 2 which will take u maybe 1-2 weeks and then if itgets too hard u can start another toon and get another buff stack. By the time they have endgame fixed and 1.3 out u will have a list of stacked buffs and heroic abalities it will be worth it and u will have decided which room u love to play most. Give another class a try u may just find u like it more than ur 1st lvl 50.

  3. What’s your source for only 100 let go from BioWare Austin, versus the rumoured 200?

    Regarding Ed’s negativity towards the Group Finder: an MMO is a social game in that there are other people around. Sure, you can engage with them to form groups, and obviously people do, or do so mostly within their own guilds. A Group Finder tool removes the awkwardness of trying to start a group off, allowing those who otherwise wouldn’t organise a group to have a chance of doing Flashpoints. Providing a way of grouping with others quickly and conveniently is worth a lot.

    As far as seeing the world(s) goes, having a Group Finder means you’ll be able to go exploring, finding Datacrons, farming, all while waiting for your group to pop. Once it does, a shuttle will arrive (teleporting you to the Flashpoint), and will also (presumably) return you to where you were when you’re done. At the moment, with all the Flashpoints accessible from the Fleet or the two on Ilum, you’re pretty much forced to hang around on the Fleet to find a group. There’s only so many times you can do laps on your speeder!

    Finally, for Tim: in Diablo 3, under Options -> Social, in the bottom right there’s a checkbox for “Allow Quick Join”, which is on by default. Uncheck that, and your friends can only jump into your game if you invite them!

    • Hey Jason – my 100 number was based on a comment on another blog – hence the disclaimer of it being a guess 😉

  4. Asher Moore says:

    There is no such thing as a WoW killer, there never will be. MMO’s are a social game, the problem is people in these type off games form friendships, join guilds etc etc. When they do this it some what removes the choice to leave and play another game unless your whole circle of players come with you, I mean who wants to start an MMO by themselves when they can play with there friends in a game they may or may not like that much. Many of these people have also been playing this game for
    multiple years, some since the game launched in November 2004. In order
    to “leave WoW”, especially for another MMO, one has to be willing to
    sacrifice a very critical element: comfort.

    Does this apply to everyone? Of course not. Just most people, which
    is why despite taking a substantial hit to their overall subscriber
    count, the game still has over 10 million subs and is likely to see that
    number climb upon the release of the Mists of Pandaria expansion.

    The Old Republic didn’t kill WoW. Warhammer didn’t kill WoW. RIFT
    didn’t kill WoW. Guild Wars didn’t kill WoW and it’s sequel won’t kill
    WoW. TERA will not kill WoW.

    Will they all take customers away from WoW? Sure. But the real question is can a new MMO survive next to WoW beacuse the only thing that will kill WoW is blizzard when they turn the servers off or stop making content for the game and until this happens (if ever) these games (SWTOR included) need to stop trying to be a ‘WoW Killer”
    and do something that gives there game elements that other MMO’s don’t have.

    • While you’re effectively right about why people stick with WoW (because that’s where their established social group is), its allure is fading. The recently announced 10.2M subs, unchanged since the previous quarter, is due pretty much entirely to (a) the annual pass and (b) their scroll of resurrection, that allows lapsed accounts to re-sub and get an instance level 80.

      The pandas shocked and disappointed a lot of people, and I really wouldn’t be surprised if the decline continues, at least once the annual pass expires (around October). Of course, I’m guessing that Blizzard will offer a second annual pass, requiring you to stay sub’d for another year, in return for getting the MoP expansion for free.

      No one game is killing WoW. But it’s a death of a few dozen cuts, as people drift off to one game or another. SWTOR, RIFT, soon GW2. Blizzard has a chance to stem that with the upcoming xpac, but really, pandas? Pokemon? Farmville? For those who seem to need a reason to leave their game of choice, Blizzard handed it to them.

  5. Rollseyes says:

    Seriously, someone needs to swat Ed Wilson. He has to be the most annoying panel member I’ve heard on any podcast ever.

    • Thanks for the feedback Rollseyes – Ed is unique and we get a lot of positive feedback on his contributions – even more so since the Lore Updates. As I’ve mentioned in a comment above, he also happens to be an incredibly decent guy off-air 😉 All that said – he definitely crystalises people’s opinions, and I wouldn’t have it any other way 😉

  6. Kudos on a largely informative and professional podcast guys.
    David, your handling of the discussion around the bioware layoffs was tasteful
    and logical. I am however, utterly mortified at Ed’s bizarre performance as his
    mode of expression was particularly offensive to those with mental impairment. My
    son suffers from brain damage due to lack of oxygen when he was born. My wife
    and I very disappointed with Ed’s disgraceful imitation of those with
    impairment. Granted, I don’t think there was any malice intended, but it
    appears to be the sort of mindless, moronic, thoughtless ridicule my son had to
    endure when he was attending primary school. You could tell from the silence
    that everybody knew that a line had been crossed, everybody but Ed. I don’t
    want to make a big deal about it, but clearly it’s not the sort of conduct one
    wouldn’t expect from a professional podcast nor from and outfit lead by a
    gentleman like yourself David.

    • Hi Tom,

      Thanks for the thoughtful comments and appreciate the feedback! On Ed’s comment, you’re right, he’s the last guy to do anything like that with malice and I know his intention was to replicate the ‘neanderthal guy’ rather than anything whatsoever to do with brain damage. I know Ed’s offline a bit at present so he may not respond in the short-term but I’ll certainly let him know of your concerns.

      David

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