ORIGINAL: Joel Billings
A buyer of a game has every right to be disappointed in a product that they buy. Tastes vary, and different people are looking for different things. You have every right to express your disappointment with specifics with what you don't like. As long as people keep things civil, they are free to post, that's the point of the forum. There is always something that can be improved in any game, and no game is perfect. We don't claim WitE to be perfect, and no doubt it could be improved by constant attention from programmers and other development personnel. However, based on the feedback of many, and the many awards that WitE received and continues to receive, I feel we succeeded with WitE
Since we're always wanting to talk history, allow me to remind people who develop computer games that once upon a time, another company with a rock-solid past built what they felt (internally) was the best game in its class out there. It won many significant awards
And it did not listen to anyone from its consumer base that did not share its own opinion of what consumers liked, with the following results:
Within 9 months of release, it had lost half of its active consumer base, losing over 1.09 billion (US) dollars. (See link above)
I coined the term 'Sovie-o-phile' to identify a market segment and its consumer attitudes toward WitE. The Sovie-o-phile market segment appears to me to be the market segment that 2by3 most wishes to please with the WitE design. This symbiosis results (I assert) in group-think between designers/programmers and the "sovie-o-phile" market segment, with the latter forming a protective circle of bias and dismissal around critics from at a minimum, my market segment (people who believe design outcome produces a game that pits a highly optimized Soviet army against a historically tightly constrained Axis, resulting in predictable and dull outcomes when I play either side).
I became angry and at times have been uncivil because it has been my experience that the Sovie-o-phile community behaves as anti-bodies whose sole purpose is to reject divergent opinion, particularly criticisms of the game aimed at giving Germany more gameplay options, and better competitive footing for a 225-turn game.
Despite past praise of the title, and recommendations to newcomers to the community to purchase the product, my well-intended game critiques were greeted with hostility among the Sovie-o-philes (though never by 2by3 or Matrix personnel), and the reflexive dismissal of anything deemed pro-Axis (especially by authors other than me) required me to treat that segment of the audience as hostile, and to 'raise my voice' accordingly (it has been my experience that people who share my market segment attitude feel similarly bullied by the Sovie-o-philes, regardless of our tone and intent, and it's really disappointing to note the silence with which 2by3 personnel react to this reflexive dismissal and unkindness, if not to me, than to others more disciplined in tone than I).
Now that I have reached the realization that nothing significant is going to change in WitE without the expenditure of more money on additional 2by3 products (and particularly in the context of my $80 early adopter investment), I feel betrayed, and lied to.
The two purposes in continuing to make these posts as dispassionately as I can is to tell the Sovie-o-philes to check themselves, because they might just be driving away 2by3 business. Now, maybe they're fine with that, but I doubt Matrix is, and my particular consumer advocacy is solely aimed at keeping people from my market segment from buying future titles if they're this expensive and beta-ish at release, and if the bias-bullying reveals itself as strongly in future titles as it has in WitE.
But the more important reason is to tell 2by3 that I'm a consumer who tells you to your face, "I feel lied to." And I'm looking to see if you care about that, because if you don't, then my prior allegiance to your company is no longer appropriately placed in your company and your products. If you don't care, and WitW releases at a similar price point and the community expresses similar attempts to homogenize opinion, I will share my opinion of War in the East in forums and message boards where my opinions might be most helpful in keeping people in my market segment from walking into a place where they will feel lied to after purchase as well.
The way you have handled people from my market segment is wrong, and the way these Sovie-o-philes have been allowed to treat people from my market segment (with the exception of me myself, because I deserve what I've gotten, and gave what I felt was deserved back) approaches despicable.
With this reply I don't want to refute or support your position as explained above and on many other occasions.
I do have one question for you; have you ever played the Soviets against a top notch German opponent?
My understanding from your previous postings you have not. And here lies the problem with your position. While you may have had a strong case in 1.04, in the current version, and I can attest from personal experience, 1941 isn't a cake walk for the Soviet and you can very easily if not outright lose, be so heavily damaged you're not really going to have a pick-nick to Berlin.
Perhaps you should explore the possibility that the game _HAS_ changed to the better the last couple of months and that the Devs _HAVE_ listened to the suggestions and problems reported and made a better game.
Is it perfect: NO. Would I like to see more and other things: YES.
But it's very playable and against equally skilled opponents can be very, very, VERY addictive and a whole lot of fun.