And the Public Relations Award goes to...

Given the recent plague of idiots who start a game of MechWarrior Online and immediately overheat themselves to death in return (I think) for the basic reward you get, win or lose, I have as previously mentioned been e-mailing the names of those players to

When the same dude showed up again, I sent another report, the text often just:

"NameOfDickhead", again.

I was pretty sure they wanted players to do this. They certainly haven't told us not to, to my knowledge.

Except for me, just now.

> Dan
> Nov 30 01:17 (PST)
> "CHIEOKURE NO KO", again, AND "skSniper", YET again. Both on my team
> in one game.
> You have told me, TWICE, that my suicide reports for "skSniper" have
> been "solved" - ticket numbers #56050 and #56059.
> This is apparently some strange definition of the word "solved" that
> I have not previously encountered.

Hello Dan,

This is Game Master Destined. I am one of the Game Masters addressing the Reported Players tickets, and all of the processed tickets go through me personally for filing and logging. I would like to clarify some information for you:

It is not our policy to disclose disciplinary actions taken against another user. This is the reason your tickets are marked as "solved" - because the report has been logged, investigated (fully) and we have moved on to the next tickets. I've noticed that you have an exorbitant amount of tickets (36, at this point in time), many of which are player reports and duplicate player reports - we are at the point now that I have to ask you to stop submitting tickets. We are aware of the situation, we have addressed it on the forums, and are taking actions against players as we speak. It takes time to investigate each report as we must go through logs and make a proper audit trail, contact the players, etc... and the more tickets we have to process, the longer it takes to build a report about each user.

Understand that, by submitting a ticket about a player, you are in no way guaranteeing that the actions you wish to be taken will be taken. We decide as a group of game masters and community representatives what should be done, and do not proceed without proof of grievances. Let me give you again the text we have been responding to you with:

"We will follow-up on this privately, thank you for bringing this to our attention.

Please note that, by receiving this notification, we are acknowledging your report and have started an investigation into the situation. Unless we have any further questions regarding your report, we require no other correspondence with you on this matter."

This is pretty clear to me. Every time you send us another ticket, you are slowing us down. I will be solving all of your tickets after logging them in our system. If you continue to contact us on this matter, I will consider it harassment and be forced to suspend your account.

This issue is now considered to be closed, and no further correspondence will be necessary on your part. Thank you for your understanding.

MechWarrior® Online™

So... yeah.

I have thus far given the MechWarrior Online people quite a lot more money, for this less-than-perfect beta, than I would have paid for a AAA retail game. I firmly intend to give them even more, if I run out of my current "Mech Credits".

I suggested to "Destined" that they might like to make more clear, via perhaps an official news post, what they want players to do and what they do not want them to do. And to be perhaps a little less ready to threaten to ban players who are only trying to help.

I shan't say much more here, because I fear I may say something intemperate, and get myself banned. Then I would be $US95.85 in the hole, not to mention all that time spent levelling up 'Mechs, and time spent promoting the game via near-obsessive blog posts to my not-insubstantial readership, and time spent reporting the abovementioned bad players.

In that case I would certainly never come back to the game, and I'd strongly advise anybody else to go with Hawken or Living Legends or even World of Tanks instead. Should you try MWO anyway, I would, if banned, certainly not advise you to buy any Mech Credits, lest this happen to you too.

And now, I'm going to get drunk and play some more MWO.

For as long as they let me.

21 Responses to “And the Public Relations Award goes to...”

  1. dan Says:

    If they actually ban me, I suggest the title for all complaint e-mails, T-shirts, protest signs and so forth should be:


  2. dan Says:

    I've mentioned this a couple of times in chat at the beginning of matches, now.

    The second time, perhaps a whole 20 minutes after putting up this post, I mentioned my little problem but not my name and someone else in the game said:


  3. Matthew Says:

    World of Tanks is a great game, I'm having lots of fun with it. It's mature enough now that they've mostly solved this kind of problem, although it sometimes crops up. The current one is that they recently implemented the ability to drive (or be pushed) over cliffs, so people are committing suicide by swan dive to deny the enemy XP from their death. Fortunately they've had enough experience that the solution the next patch contains should work, which is nice.

  4. cfuse Says:

    They have a twitter ticker on their front page for the hashtag #MWO.

    I suggest the addition of the hashtag #YOUBANDAN and a link to this page.

  5. Mohonri Says:

    As part of my job, I perform a task similar to Destined--reviewing user-submitted reports--and I can sympathize with his point of view. There are three points I'd like to make:
    1) He's right--every time you submit a report, it costs them time and money to investigate. If your reports are not the kind they're looking for, it probably takes them *more* time to process, since they're looking for something that isn't there.
    2) That being said, if your reports aren't what they're looking for, they should probably publish some guidelines so that you, as a well-intentioned user, know when you can report a player and when it's more of a "this is a problem in the game that needs to be addressed" issue.
    3) Banning your account seems a bit overkill. If Dan is submitting bogus reports, why not simply ignore his reports? If he's otherwise a good citizen in-game, let him play.

  6. TwoHedWlf Says:

    Judging from posts on the forums I'd be surprised if they weren't being swamped with emails like that. Along with huge angry rants about things like, "You're totally ruining this game and I hope you programmers die in a fire because I can't have windowed full screen rather than full screen!"

  7. LeVelo Says:

    Dan, I'm sorry I didn't say anything before you put money in. You looked like you were having fun and pointing out the problems would've been a downer.

    The game's not going to improve at all, the developer's public relations efforts will continue to be tragically hamfisted, and the suicides and griefing will grow to apocalyptic levels. 8-man suicide squads and automated teamkilling/screenshotting drama farmer scripts are just around the corner. Have you met the ECM bot who spams the chat channel so that non-voice teams can't coordinate? Tip of the iceberg.
    They don't care about your reports because this isn't really a beta test. It's a milking machine.

    • dan Says:

      I really don't think any of this follows from my one bad experience with a support guy.

      At the moment, the game's working quite well, the number of heat-suiciders has plummeted (AFKers and suicide-by-enemy are still pretty common), and I can't remember the last time I saw an intentional teamkiller.

      • TwoHedWlf Says:

        I haven't seen an intentional teamkiller. I've accidentally killed one of my own once...From losing 15,000 cbills saying I did anyway, I didn't notice it. You're right though, I don't remember seeing any heat suiciders the last couple days.

  8. Fallingwater Says:

    I mentioned before that I don't play multiplayer at all in anything that isn't a local LANparty - and this post explains why: it requires dealing with people. Who are very often stupid, and won't quit doing stupid things just because someone tells them to.

    In a local LAN I can just go to the offending person, whack them over the head with a rolled-up newspaper and tell them to stop it. And if they don't, the other players will probably eventually physically boot them out of the room.

    Online, dealing with stupid people usually requires going through other people, who may themselves be stupid. I have a low tolerance for stupidity, and when I can't get rid of it I'm very likely to throw up my hands in disgust, quit the game and go have a walk or something.

    In a single-player game, the AI is at least justified when it does stupid stuff on account of not being sentient.

    Which prompts the question: when we eventually manage to crack actual artificial intelligence, who'll stop AIs from wiping the floor with us poor mortals in online games over and over again?

  9. RobL Says:

    Bit shocked you're $100* into mwo, I've a love/hate of it and definitely wouldn't "invest" until it's out of beta or at least show some sign of stability of mech/weapon balance I'd hate to buy some expensive build only for it to be nerfed the next day.

    I must say though that I'm still new enough to enjoy the trial mechs while saving/grinding for an XL engine. I hope they continue to switch them around every few weeks.

    *although I'm about to spend that on a hardware upgrade in order to play at more than 20fps :-(

  10. WeaselITB Says:

    This won't be fixed until they rework the C-bill system. I tried it out over the weekend (based on your recommendations, Dan), and while I'm not a complete moron when it comes to shooters, the C-bill rewards system is either bogus or I'm missing something obvious. Why do I get 60,000 on a loss, but only get a couple thousand for the damage I dealt? Sure, I understand that the trial mechs are supposed to make less, but from a purely mathematical point of view, the login-suicide-repeat strategy is a very easy way to build up credits on the trial mechs.

    Heck, even non-trial mechs, with a pretty impressive kills and damage score, earn more money from a basic win than from anything they "did" in battle:
    (see the second after-game screenshot ... this chap made 100k for a win, but only 50k for everything he "did")

    • J Says:

      I guess the incentive is to play as a team to win the match (big reward), rather than play as a bunch of individuals to do skilled things on your own (small reward).

  11. n17ikh Says:

    Sounds like MWO needs something like the League of Legends end-of-match reporting system, where players can report other players for a number of different offenses, or, more recently, honor the better players in an attempt to reduce the legendary dickishness of the LoL community. If a player gets enough reports, their case goes before the tribunal, a peer review system where players earn in-game funds for playing juryman. If the tribunal votes that the reports are justified, the case is reviewed by a Riot employee and then the banhammer is brought down. Maybe Mechwarrior isn't established enough for something like the Tribunal, which was fairly recently enacted, but surely a bad-player-reporting system that doesn't fill their main bug reporting system with tickets would help here.

  12. RichVR Says:


    8v8 battles and ECM. Time for a new post.

  13. RobL Says:

    Along the lines of "Streak-ECM commando weeeeeeeeee! I am as a god!"

Leave a Reply