November Aion Community Address
It's been a busy couple of weeks here since the launch of AionM. The post-launch period of many games means that you have time for a bit of rest. After an MMO launches however, your job is just beginning.
Recently, we released a lot of information on the sales and success of Aion in respect to Europe and North America, and also globally. We are off to a very, very respectable start.
We are constantly delighted that so many of you purchased and are now playing Aion. Shortly after Aion's launch we experienced longer queue times than we would have liked. We reacted by working immediately on a server transfer system. However, the server transfer we began to implement was a rush job, and we are not happy with the result. As it currently stands, transferring characters is a manual process that would shift a significant percentage of our customer service staff members' focus from issues like real money transfers/trading (RMT) and botting that we feel should take priority.
It's a difficult decision, but we are delaying the deployment of our server transfer system until we can do it right for you. We will eventually honor our promise to give eligible players the opportunity to transfer for free, but we're shooting to implement transfers in the first half of 2010, though we don't have a specific deadline for you.
Moving on to much more positive news, in the past week we deployed a new patch to address a CryEngine.dll crash that we've seen reported commonly. (If you're still seeing this issue, please report it in our tech support forums.)
Speaking of forums, our Community Team is focusing again on the forums and the website. The members of the team are investigating ways to improve the player experience in the forums and website. We are taking your feedback to update and improve the Aion web services overall.
It's no secret that we've had our share of RMT spammers and been plagued by the associated problem of bots. We're working to eliminate these persistent pests through a multipronged approach. We have instituted a dedicated Game Surveillance Unit (GSU). The GSU is a team whose primary mission is to identify and ban users violating our terms of service: bot users, RMT chat spammers, and the like. We just did an in-depth and focused sweep through the game to ban users in violation using some new methods with exciting capabilities that I'm personally very happy about. These new methods are going to catch a lot of bot users who thought they were safe. This week we've banned over 27,000 of these accounts, and we'll keep searching for other offenders to continue improving the quality of your game environment.
Finally, outside of the complaints about bots and the RMT vermin, perhaps the biggest criticism from our players comes in relation to the pacing, experience curve, item drops, and overall difficulty and risk vs. reward in Aion current gameplay. I'm glad to share some preliminary responses from the Development Team and affirm to you their willingness to address these issues. Obviously, data tuning on a live MMO isn't something you do carelessly, and it will take some time to fully implement. In the near future, we hope to deploy a short-term enhancement to address some of concerns that you have told us about across the board. We're currently testing some game variables to increase experience gain and other factors. We look forward to sharing some good news on this soon.
Stepping away from the game as it is, we're showing off Aion and its future plans this week at the G-Star convention in Korea, as well as DreamHack in Sweden! If you haven't already had the chance, take a peek at the future of Aion.
Take care and see you in the Abyss,
Executive Producer, NCSOFT West