Photo-Receptor Focus on: Server Mergers Redux – Wait, What?
As you probably know, I’m a big fan of server mergers. I think they’re a necessity at this point. I’m not the only one and a lot of people have been asking for them. Well, Bioware has answered the community. OK, so yeah, they’re calling it free transfers and they’re making us do all the work and it’s only being done in little bits and we don’t have all the info, but hey, they’re trying right?
More ranting after the jump…
OK, so I’m a bit cranky about this whole thing. Make no mistake, something needs to be done, but I’m not sure the method Bioware has chosen is the best one.
First off, and sidetracking a wee bit, finding information is difficult on a lot of things. Sure, the info is there, but you often have to dig and dig to get each little nugget. A little bit on the Dev Tracker, a little bit in General, a little more over in Community. By the time Bioware has put out all the info, it’s usually because whatever the topic is has gone live. I don’t like that. I don’t like my info in dribs and drabs. Don’t tease me. Give me all the information, so I can make my plans and intelligent, informed decisions. I’m a fan of intelligent, informed decisions.
Well, I can’t make my plans or decisions for the transfer because I don’t know enough. I have no idea if my server will be an origin server. Yes, the transfer process is already live and there are a few servers listed. Very few: only four US servers, as I write this.
So, why am I calling this “server mergers”? Because basically that’s what it is. Yes, we have the option to leave our original server – to go to only one designated location. No choice other than “Do I stay or do I go?” That’s actually a merger, in my opinion, since I don’t have the option to transfer wherever I might want to. Make up whatever fancy name you want to call it, though.
The worst thing about this “merger/transfer” is that I have to do all the work. I have to request a transfer for each my characters individually. So, instead of a nice, neat process whereby a server was merged with another, you have tons of activity as players desert origin servers for greener pastures. Each transfer can take up to three hours, which isn’t all that bad, until you multiply it by eight or however many you want to move.
And if you have a guild to move? OMG! We have to empty our guild banks and when we get to the new server we get to completely reform our guild. Lucky us, as we are back to doing guild invites for hundreds of members. We then get to contact customer service and ask for our guild bank tabs to be reinstated. With two large guilds of characters to move, this is going to entail tons of work for me and my fellow officers. Again, I can’t make many plans because I simply don’t know enough.
I get that Bioware is proceeding cautiously and that’s why there are only a few at the start. I applaud their caution in this. However, I wish Bioware would at least tell the origin servers who they are and what day they can expect their server transfers to be active. I know that sounds just like a real schedule, right? Well, some of us have lives and like to plan stuff. Yes, I realize this is a shocking and aberrant concept, but hey, I’m a gamer, so I’m allowed to be different. I like to know in advance what’s going to happen. I don’t like sitting around waiting to see if we are origin or destination. This whole not knowing until it happens method of Bioware’s drives me nuts. (Yeah, back to the lack of info thing.)
I also realize some players are not happy about probably losing their names – regular and legacy names. I can sympathize with that, although it’s not as big a consideration for me. Sure, I want my names, but I’d rather have more players to play with. So, I can make do on that.
Bottom line, it is so necessary that Bioware does something to consolidate the player base. Logging in to a Republic toon on Alderaan on my server and being the only player on the whole planet is discouraging. However, I question this method that Bioware has chosen. I’m afraid we are going to lose even more of our membership in our guild. Those who decide it just isn’t worth the hassle to have to move characters.
I think a real merger would have been a lot less painful for the paying customers.
But then that’s just my two credits. What’s yours?