I have written before about DC Online. It is an online game that is relaxing to play. However lately it hasn’t been relaxing, and it is confirming my fear of online games.
With non online games, if you want to play it, you can. You don’t have to deal with problems. However it seems that online while it has lots of advantages, just doesn’t fulfill it first obligation of being reliable. It should be a law that online games should be able to be able to played locally at reduced functionality of course for things that require network access.
So in the last week DC Online has delayed me getting connected for several minutes. This is especially frustrating because I am a paying member, and you see the status of non paying members also connecting. It is a simple formula. Paying members get first access, and then everyone else comes second. DC Online has chosen to allow people who have paid in the past, and people who don’t pay, to also connect during high population player times, although having to suffer a longer delay. This is not acceptable. Would any business give people access while its paying customers are asked to wait? What should be the case, is a different server for those who are not members to play.
So what is the big deal of having to wait 5-10 minutes before you connect to play? It is another small irritation of many ways in which the developer doesn’t respect their audience. Another example is the bad quality control of the last update. They had to pull the update a few days because of glitches, and then when they pulled it, the game still had glitches. Then then brought it back, and the game still has glitches. Listen I know nothing is perfect, but quality control is asleep at the wheel for not having some testing before this was rolled out. You can not use your production system to test software which is clearly what is happening here.
I think part of the problem is that many online games struggle overtime with content issues and burnout of players. Many big online games close, and it makes sense for a business to only support when they have a profit. This does not excuse the fact that in the time I have played this game, the quality has been lower than other games I have played, but I accepted it since it was my first online game experience.
Don’t misunderstand. I have played plenty of games that required internet access, but none that were an MMO. MMO’s at least DC Online, tend to be plagued with issues. Not only technical issues of reliability, but also issues with other players. I would say that most of the time, maybe 80%, people are just like the real world. However the 20% of the time, those people just make the game not fun at all. What would be nice besides being able to ignore those people, is to be able to ignore large swaths of people who are just crude and time-wasting.
You would think that online you would be able to customize your options, but that isn’t the case. Unfortunately people can harass you in many ways other than directly messaging you. It should be standard for protection for minorities, and for security. The lack of visible player protection has always bothered me. I am not asking for police to patrol online games, but perhaps something like the Guardian Angeles for online, where harassment and incivility can be handled informally. Perhaps one day that will happen. I would join that organization.