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Old 02-28-2008, 05:37 AM   #81
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Originally Posted by Ksandra View Post
Not to mention that Jensen made her last AG nearly ten years ago; there are plenty of younger adventure fans (such as myself) who have never played the GK games, and aren't going to instantly rush out to buy GM just because it's OMG JANE JENSEN.
Apart from all the marketing chat and the publishing chat and the PR chat and the Hype-o-Meter chat, I guess this is really the point, we want to admit it or not.

When Gray Matter was announced the reaction was pretty much "Oh my God, it's Jane Jensen!", 'cause - through the years - gamers have looked at her as a synonymous of great games. As everything, there are supporters, detractors and indifferent. Over analyze the subject, in my opinion, distract from the base: let me do an example, Bill Tiller's "A Vampyre Story". I never really liked his games, and even if publishers/developers/PRs flood me with pre-release material, still I'm not looking forward this title.
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Old 02-28-2008, 05:48 AM   #82
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If you're implying that I was never interested in GM to start with, I assure you that this isn't the case. Like most people here, I was highly intrigued by GM when it was first announced and very disappointed when it was temporarily cancelled. But for those of us with a slightly more, shall we say, neutral perspective on Jane Jensen and her games, you can't really blame us for being underwhelmed with a) what we've seen of the game so far and b) the developers' and publishers' PR efforts. Maybe you're right and it'll turn out to be brilliant, I don't know - but as far as I'm concerned, all I've seen so far is an average-looking game that's being marketed very poorly and doesn't seem likely to be released on schedule.
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Old 02-28-2008, 06:00 AM   #83
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Oh yes, I never try to sound neutral, 'cause I'm not. What I think is that neutrality is impossible to achieve, in both ways. When I look at the trailer, I see much more than an average-looking game; and when I read about the story, I was deeply intrigued.

Isn't it ever a matter of taste? There are people vividly expecting Still Life 2, although we didn't know pretty much anything about the game, 'cause it was announced recently. There are people eagerly waiting "A Vampyre Story", 'cause of the graphics and visuals.

And I'm expecting Gray Matter, 'cause it's Jane Jensen's, and none of her game ever disappointed me. I think it's a reason as good as the others above mentioned to wait a game.
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Old 02-28-2008, 06:29 AM   #84
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Everyone knows that practically speaking it is a good idea for a publisher to promote their product. All I am saying is that that does not oblige them to do so. I have been pretty clear about the fact that I am talking about the minimum definition. That definition still does not include releasing a set number of trailers, screenshots, press releases, or personal e-mails.

See, for me this is a larger issue than just Gray Matter. I dislike the current hard-sell culture of mass entertainment. I would love to see a no-nonsense adventure game publisher who simply did a fantastic job with the actual games. I do not particularly need a dedicated website, mailing list, forum, reviews, reminders, pop-ups, ads, threads, commercials, or demos. I want a great game.

Now having said that, this does not mean that I would not love to see something like what they had in the golden age of Sierra. They had not just fantastic games but also amazing packaging. Their demos were nice. I still derive a great deal of enjoyment from all the various publicity materials they released back in the day, but that is because they had a sense of fun and they had heart. And of course they had InterAction, which was something very special. You can download a few issues from Ken Williams's Sierra On-Line fan site.

But those levels of craftsmanship and artistry are simply not there anymore in the PR materials we generally see these days. There is no sense of adventure or character. They have lost the most basic sense of simple fun. Easily the bigger part of these materials is cranked out from a conveyor belt and there are no particularly loving operators manipulating the levers.

* * *

So yes, of course I would love to see great communication on all levels from Tonuzaba and ANACONDA/dtp. Nor would I be averse to any tasteful teasers, though in truth we have already had quite a bit and asking for more seems a bit greedy. Surely we want something left for the game itself.

But we are still not entitled to any of this. Anything the creators do not want to give or are not in a position to give, that is their choice. It is the misplaced sense of entitlement that I am arguing against. We do not own any piece of Gray Matter except any individual copies of the end-product we may purchase. An overbearing fan with an exaggerated sense of entitlement is an offputting thing.

It is also worth bearing in mind that this is Jane's first game with Tonuzaba. Things are bound to get rough at some point in getting something this big off the ground, especially when this is basically a Transatlantic collaboration. I want to give them all the time and space they need to do what it takes to get it right without anyone sacrificing their health or well-being in the process.

* * *

We simply do not know what the situation is and trying for a moment to imagine myself in their position, I realise it would make no sense to release any info about a possible further delay until they could give something pretty firm about the eventual release date.

Besides which I would point out that we are still in the first quarter of 2008. Everything is still on the tentative schedule. But for my part I would not mind a further postponement. Just let them get it right.

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Old 02-28-2008, 07:57 AM   #85
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Look, obviously I agree that the quality of the game is the most important thing in the long run. The problem is that it's impossible to judge the quality of the game without access to preview material, such as screenshots, demos and gameplay descriptions. Very few people these days are willing to buy a game without doing some research on it first, and any remotely competent publisher will realise this, which is precisely why it is so essential for publishers to provide PR.

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But we are still not entitled to any of this. Anything the creators do not want to give or are not in a position to give, that is their choice. It is the misplaced sense of entitlement that I am arguing against. We do not own any piece of Gray Matter except any individual copies of the end-product we may purchase. An overbearing fan with an exaggerated sense of entitlement is an offputting thing.
You know, I was about to reply politely to what you said until I read that last sentence; now I'm more inclined to just say 'screw you'. Expecting developers and publishers to provide the occasional update on the progress of their game does not equal being 'an overbearing fan with an exaggerated sense of entitlement', and feeble ad hominem arguments like this do nothing to make your argument sound any stronger. As far as I'm concerned, this discussion is now over; have a nice day.
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Old 02-28-2008, 08:12 AM   #86
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Ksandra, what you may not realise is that I have been an overbearing fan. I try very hard not be one any longer. I was not talking about you or anyone in specific, but I was talking as what is often termed a fan, that is, an admirer.* I mean, what else would I be speaking as?

Creators in the entertainment industry are not serving our needs any more than we are serving theirs. It is thankfully far more complex and prismatic than that. We each have our reasons for doing what we do, but in order for the ecosystem to stay healthy we need respect and ordinary courtesy for each other.

That also means acknowledging that the makers of these things are human beings and deserve to be treated as such, not as cogs in machines designed to churn out another regular fix.

* (Of a great many adventure games. The reason for the disclaiming nature of the sentence is that I dislike the term fan, it being short for fanatic. I am not sure why anyone would actually want fanatic fans, or be one. I believe most creative people want to be able to relate to their audience as individuals rather than worshipped, hated, or otherwise differently treated idols.)

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Old 02-28-2008, 09:18 AM   #87
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Simo, if you weren't referring to anyone here then what exactly was the point of your comment? I honestly can't think of anyone here, or on any of the other boards I've seen, who I'd describe as 'overbearing' in their requests for information. Just because you've gone overboard in the past doesn't mean you can now go to the other extreme and describe any kind of fan expectations as 'overbearing'.

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Creators in the entertainment industry are not serving our needs any more than we are serving theirs. It is thankfully far more complex and prismatic than that.
How, exactly? They provide us with games and we provide them with money; it's as simple as that. Just because game development is a creative industry doesn't mean that it isn't a business just like any other. If my employers chose to just ignore our clients for months on end we would lose all of them, and with good reason.

I fully agree that game designers should be treated as human beings, as long as they extend the same courtesy to us and don't treat us as if we're beneath their notice. I'm not suggesting that anyone is doing this deliberately, but like it or not, if you neglect the fanbase and stop replying to people you have communicated with previously, that's the impression you give off. And that really is all I have to say.
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Old 02-28-2008, 09:54 AM   #88
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By definition, an overbearing anything is offputting. As you are now being. Overbearing as in domineering, haughty, arrogant, quite rude in fact. You have also used up your benefit of the doubt.
Just because you've gone overboard in the past doesn't mean you can now go to the other extreme and describe any kind of fan expectations as 'overbearing'.
Which is probably why I do not. Eh? (Tap-tap-tap... Is this thing on?)
They provide us with games and we provide them with money; it's as simple as that.
Well... That is one way of looking at it! Need I say this seems as impoverished a view as if you were to say that you eat food and it keeps you alive, or that you listen to music and it drowns out the sirens?

(By the way, whoever keeps the thread titles descriptive is doing an exceptionally good job. That is accurate!)

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Old 02-28-2008, 11:20 AM   #89
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[...] I dislike the term fan, it being short for fanatic. I am not sure why anyone would actually want fanatic fans, or be one. I believe most creative people want to be able to relate to their audience as individuals rather than worshipped, hated, or otherwise differently treated idols.)
I think that this is a quite too literally explanation of the word. Being a "fan" of something/someone doesn't mean sacrificing your critical judgment to an unconditioned faith/hate/other. It means to look forward to something, to care about something, to be passionate about something. Or, at least, this is what I mean when I said "fan".

It's pretty clear, in this thread, that I'm a fan of Jane Jensen. I also think that the disappointment of Ksandra born, as he (or she - sorry: don't know ) stated in a previous post, from the appreciation of the game/author/other premise and the subsequent total lack of substantial information. I think that me and Ksandra are equally "fan", in the meaning that we both care about the game and its quality: if the game, when it's out, won't fit my expectations I'll be the first one to point this out, 'cause I'm a "fan" without being "blind", as Ksandra - disappointed now by the the author/publishers choices - could and would demand something more than retrieved hype to look forward to the game.
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Old 02-28-2008, 01:53 PM   #90
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By definition, an overbearing anything is offputting. As you are now being. Overbearing as in domineering, haughty, arrogant, quite rude in fact. You have also used up your benefit of the doubt.
Insults like these are entirely uncalled for, Simo. And in this particular case, quite untrue. I suggest you refrain from making your comments personal from now on.

As for the argument itself, where did the issue of "entitlement" even come up? Did I miss something? I don't recall anyone saying anything was owed to anyone. All I've heard is a relational observation: IF a publisher wants the public to be/stay excited about a product (and if they don't, it's entirely within their rights to be that extraordinarily stupid), then they must accept some responsibility for nurturing that through PR. Obligation isn't even an factor, because it's entirely conditional, and no one has suggested otherwise. All you're ultimately doing is arguing against people saying that a two-way street needs to run two ways.

On an entirely different note, I'll mention that I do have contact with dtp, and of course they know what's going on with the game. I'm not at liberty to discuss the details they've shared with me (which is often the case with publishers, so read nothing into that statement), but they'll certainly let people know what's what at some point. In the meantime, I'll also mention also that AG does have a Jane Jensen interview in the pipeline. No promises on dates, but it's not like the game or its designer have been sucked into a black hole.
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Old 02-28-2008, 04:32 PM   #91
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Here's a weird development: on Gamespy, in the list of upcoming releases for PC games, Gray Matter is listed with a release date of Q2 2008. Same at pc.ign.com.

Anaconda's site hasn't changed, however. Web updates seem to happen sporadically there, and the English site isn't as up-to-date as the German site.

Back to being patient...
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Old 02-28-2008, 04:43 PM   #92
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On an entirely different note, I'll mention that I do have contact with dtp, and of course they know what's going on with the game. I'm not at liberty to discuss the details they've shared with me (which is often the case with publishers, so read nothing into that statement), but they'll certainly let people know what's what at some point. In the meantime, I'll also mention also that AG does have a Jane Jensen interview in the pipeline. No promises on dates, but it's not like the game or its designer have been sucked into a black hole.
Two wonderful notes of hope, Jackal: thanks Although, it's a crime: I want the interview NOW! ... Only joking
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Old 02-29-2008, 12:35 AM   #93
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My statement was in response to personal comments made by Ksandra about Jane Jensen, general comments made by Ksandra about those looking forward to Gray Matter, and personal comments made by Ksandra about me.

[I removed a list of quotes here. Anyone interested could go over the thread. The quote referenced below is: "Just because you've gone overboard in the past doesn't mean you can now go to the other extreme and describe any kind of fan expectations as 'overbearing'."]

After the personal slights against Jane, the repeated implication that other people were being less balanced in their views on Gray Matter, the patronising tone, and the baseless accusation of "feeble ad hominem arguments", it was this last comment quoted above that finally provoked my observation that Ksandra was being haughty and rude.

I laid myself on the line by confessing something I am not proud of, that I myself have not always maintained a sense of perspective about being a fan, in an attempt to remedy Ksandra's feeling that he or she had been insulted. Ksandra took that admission, weaved it into a strawman argument, and slapped me across the face with it. That was not particularly nice.

I stand by everything I said and feel justified in having done so. To have said less would have been to turn a blind eye to unfair comments made about people not present to defend themselves, as well as regarding larger issues I care a great deal about. Whether any of this was misguided I am not in a position to judge. At least I know I acted in good faith. And of course I am sorry that the discussion turned out the way it did.

I also mean it when I say I have nothing else against any of the people concerned. Any further comments from me will be about the topic at hand. And now if you will excuse me, I will be putting an adventure game where this forum is, and get some actual adventuring done...

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P.S. There should be zero tolerance for personal bashing of game designers who are clearly doing their best in endeavours they have invested themselves in. This behaviour is one of the manifestations of the exaggerated sense of entitlement I spoke of, and deserves only scorn. It does not help that it mostly comes from anonymous people unwilling to put themselves on the line.

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Old 02-29-2008, 06:25 AM   #94
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My statement was in response to personal comments made by Ksandra about Jane Jensen, general comments made by Ksandra about those looking forward to Gray Matter, and personal comments made by Ksandra about me.
Please point me to the place where I've personally attacked you, or Jensen, or anyone looking forward to Grey Matter. You don't seem to understand the difference between attacking a person's behaviour - or in your case, their arguments - and attacking the person, which I have never done. I've stated repeatedly that I don't necessarily think Jensen & co are being deliberately neglectful of their fanbase, but that this is the impression they give off, and you can see from other comments in this thread that I'm far from the only person who feels this way. I'm not prepared to make excuses for them because I honestly can't think of anything I'd regard as a good excuse (except for something really terrible like the game being cancelled, which doesn't appear to be the case).

Quote:
After the personal slights against Jane, the repeated implication that other people were being less balanced in their views on Gray Matter, the patronising tone, and the baseless accusation of "feeble ad hominem arguments", it was this last comment quoted above that finally provoked my observation that Ksandra was being haughty and rude.
You know, I find that comment hilarious coming from the person whose first post in this thread contained the following sentences: "Let's have some perspective here", "If someone gets aggravated because a computer game is released later than planned, they should probably get something less ephemeral to have that reaction to" and "Those words [projected release dates] are there for a reason." I can hardly think of anything more patronising than those remarks, especially since no one had ever suggested they were upset by the delayed release date (as opposed to the lack of communication). As the tone of my posts, I honestly think I've been fairly restrained in my responses to some of your more ridiculous comments, especially the ones regarding the publishing business (which you clearly know nothing about). If you choose to argue from a position of complete ignorance, you can hardly complain when other people call you on it.

As for implying that other people were being less balanced, I said that because I honestly do think it's the case. Let me put it like this: Do you really believe that there would be anywhere near this much hype around GM if it were being made by someone other than JJ? This isn't meant as an attack - hyping a game based purely on the developer is fair enough, if you really trust them that much - but it can hardly be described as 'balanced'. I'm just assessing GM as I would any other game, which I do think is a more neutral position - though whether it's a more accurate assessment is a different matter.

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I laid myself on the line by confessing something I am not proud of, that I myself have not always maintained a sense of perspective about being a fan, in an attempt to remedy Ksandra's feeling that he or she had been insulted. Ksandra took that admission, weaved it into a strawman argument, and slapped me across the face with it. That was not particularly nice.
I did nothing of the sort. Your original comment was: "It is the misplaced sense of entitlement that I am arguing against. We do not own any piece of Gray Matter except any individual copies of the end-product we may purchase. An overbearing fan with an exaggerated sense of entitlement is an offputting thing." Regardless of the fact that you couched it in general terms, the clear implication was that people who do expect updates from publishers - like me, Fienepen and others in this thread - are 'overbearing fans' with 'a misplaced sense of entitlement'.

I gave you the opportunity to explain what you meant by this, but all you did was state that you too had been an 'overbearing fan' in the past. This doesn't explain why you thought the original comment was relevant to this discussion, since you claim you weren't referring to anyone in this thread. If this is true - and for fairness's sake, I'll assume it is - you really need to be more careful about how you phrase things, especially when the mod makes it clear that he thinks you're the one being rude and agressive.

Looking back over this thread, I think it's fairly clear that we've both misunderstood some of the other's comments. I'd be happy to make peace with you if you're willing, but I will not put up with comments like this: "By definition, an overbearing anything is offputting. As you are now being. Overbearing as in domineering, haughty, arrogant, quite rude in fact. You have also used up your benefit of the doubt." Nor will I put up with baseless accusations of 'personal attacks' against you, Jane Jensen, or anyone else. Think carefully before you reply, because if you keep on talking to me like this, I will ask the mods to take further action.
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Old 02-29-2008, 07:56 AM   #95
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Think carefully before you reply, because if you keep on talking to me like this, I will ask the mods to take further action.
I understand why this thread is going way too "hot", and I think that partially it's my fault, 'cause when the word "fan" come up in this thread I think it's clear that would be me: I never hide the fact that I'm a Jane Jensen's fan nor that I'm hardly waiting Gray Matter.

For what's worth, I only want to state a few think: I don't estimate that Ksandra made personal comments about Jane Jensen or GM's publishers; his/her comments about the people - like me - waiting the game, although strong, never were offensive, or at least I haven't taken them that way. Concerning the exchange of argumentations between Ksandra and Simo, I think they both used words that - here on a forum, without the support of visual communication - could be misinterpreted in a sense much heavier than it was supposed to be.
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Old 02-29-2008, 09:20 AM   #96
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Andrea, I don't think it's your fault at all. I'll admit that my exchanges with Simo have got a little heated (though I still strongly deny any kind of 'personal comments'), but you've been entirely polite throughout. I disagree with you on some issues regarding GM, but I certainly don't have anything against you personally, and I admire you for having the honesty to admit that you're predisposed to like GM because you're a Jensen fan.

I'm a girl, by the way, and 'Ksandra' is the alias I've used for several years on this forum and over at Just Adventure. I don't really see how I'm any more 'anonymous' than most of the other posters here, but to counter any accusations of cowardice, I'll state right here that my real name is Debbie and I'm a 23-year-old auditor from London. Unfortunately I can't link to a personal website or anything like that, because I don't have one.
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Old 02-29-2008, 09:34 AM   #97
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I'm a girl, by the way, and 'Ksandra' is the alias I've used for several years on this forum and over at Just Adventure. I don't really see how I'm any more 'anonymous' than most of the other posters here, but to counter any accusations of cowardice, I'll state right here that my real name is Debbie and I'm a 23-year-old auditor from London. Unfortunately I can't link to a personal website or anything like that, because I don't have one.
I've never thought you being a coward or something. I used his/her 'cause I don't really know and I'm slightly new to this forum so I hadn't the possibility to figure it out

By the way: Andrea, 24 years old, from Lodi (near Milan), Italy, university student Nice to meet you!
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Old 02-29-2008, 01:45 PM   #98
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I've never thought you being a coward or something. I used his/her 'cause I don't really know and I'm slightly new to this forum so I hadn't the possibility to figure it out
I know - sorry if I confused you. It was Simo's post I was referring to, not yours.

Quote:
By the way: Andrea, 24 years old, from Lodi (near Milan), Italy, university student Nice to meet you!
You too.

Regarding Jackal's news, it's good to hear that someone knows what's going on with the game (even if it's been delayed, which I suspect is the case). Let's hope we get some more news relatively soon.
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Old 02-29-2008, 04:44 PM   #99
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Man, this dispute is pointless and boring.
You are all so wordy and serious.
And easy to aggravate. If already now it is considered to call the mods for action then I guess this is as close as it will ever get to a flamewar on the AdventureGamers forum (if we leave out g_sakil's senselessly provocative posts, of course).

Otherwise, I'm very much awaiting the interview!
There was a relatively recent Interview with Jane Jensen exactly 3 months ago in a german newspaper called FAZ.
It was very interesting and had some more unusual questions.
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Old 03-01-2008, 04:59 AM   #100
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CORT-X's English translation of the interview ozzie mentioned can be found here:

cort-x.fwheel.net/FAZ.html

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