WHY MIDDLE EARTH FAILED – THE INSIDE STORY! [Author: wirehead]

You think TwisTer’s got scoops? Hah! Here’s the latest on why Sierra cancelled Middle Earth. Apparently they had problems with some of these rules…

The ugly truth is that the design team had some radical ideas that were not in line with management’s vision of the game. The following excerpts from the design document explain some of these features, and as you can see, they were just too risky to implement.

Permanent Death

“…upon the death of a player character a customer support representative will go to the home of the player and kill them. This rule insures that players will be more careful during gameplay, and the game experience will be far more realistic.”

Character Psychology

“…Due to the intensely realistic gameplay of Middle-earth, players will be assigned a psychiatrist for psychoanalysis at the end of each gaming session. This will insure that players will be able to function normally in society after such an intense virtual experience.”

Character Binding

“…upon entering the game newbies will be tied up and beaten into submission by veteran players frustrated by the permanent death rules. Eventually they will be released but only after paying their first 3 months of subscription fees.”

Non-spell casting humans

“…The design team recognizes that magic IS NOT REAL, and therefore will not be represented in the game. Players will be able to perform card tricks and slight of hand, light off stink bombs, etc. but under no circumstances will we endorse any of that pansy spell casting hoo hoo in the game.”

Realistic hobbit strength

“…Hobbits are a bunch of wimps and we know it. Hobbits in the game will hardly be worth playing due to their diminutive size, weakness, and lazy attitude, but we will put them in anyway because they are in the books. They should be easy to kill and that will be good for a laugh.”

Elf population limitations

“…elves breed like rabbits and we just can’t have that. Everybody wants to be an elf because they are good looking and live forever. To counteract this we intend to implement a system of involuntary sterilization to all elven characters in their first month of play.”

For more info, and pictures of the ME dev team being killed, check out the official Middle Earth is Dead, Thanks for All The Fish website.

IT’S NOT JUST EMAIL, IT’S A CAREFULLY CONCEALED CRY FOR HELP [Author: wirehead]

I know, I know. I shouldn’t be giving him so much attention. Then again, I watch Jerry Springer once in a while too. Seriously — I’ll print the whole mail below, and then summarize, with a minimum of giggling, exactly why this is so sad.

===

“I can’t let it go? – Lum”

Yes, you did drag my name up again. YOU did, not me. I haven’t done anything as “Senith” in months.

“Yes, she likes my site, thank you for asking.”

I didn’t ask. Or care, actually.

“It’s called humor. Look it up.”

Explain how comparing an employee of a gaming company to a Party of Five regular is funny? See me laughing? No.

“Huh? This is one of those paragraphs you have to be on drugs to understand, I think.”

It wasn’t all that complicated, and for someone who postures themself as being so “educated” and “intelligent”, I thought you’d be able to understand it easily…but here, let me simplify it for you: you are so wrapped up in yourself you think statements made about other people (in this case, Iron Will) are actually directed at you. Is that “simple” enough for your brain to digest, or shall I pass you the LSD? A quick foray into Psych 101 and English 102 would make that sentence pretty elementary…

“BURN IRONWILL! SOAK HIM IN FLAMING ACID! HAVE WEASELS CHEW OUT HIS EYES! Is that better?”

No, I never said scream his name either. I said “let it go”. I just wonder why you aim your fire at me, when all I did was do the same thing you would have done: made some nasty comments public. Just like
you’re doing now, with my last two e-mails. Your criticism is pretty hypocritical.

“Actually if you read the comments on the first story, they did enjoy reading that one.”

If you really believe that they respect you for taking their praise and shoving it down their throats, you may be a little more confused than you pretend.

“Naw, it just plops in my mailbox right regularly.”

Is that right? How many times is “right regularly”? Once a month? Twice a month? I wonder why people still bring it up…could it be because people like you continue to flaunt it like it’s a battle flag for your cause? Maybe if you’d shut your mouth and quit talking about it for five minutes, people would forget it and let it go.

So here I am, once again, saying the same thing: let it die, and use something else to climb your way into the arms of every desperate child looking for leadership.

-“Ex-Senith”

===

OK. One thing jumped out at me, in between the attempts to talk down to me and trying to appear intellectual by adding levels of reference (for example, “Party of Five regular” instead of “Neve Campbell”).

He doesn’t get it.

He is still completely clueless as to what happened. He thinks he did nothing wrong. Hell, he probably thinks he should still be a smurf.

All I did was do the same thing you would have done: made some nasty comments public. Just like you’re doing now, with my last two e-mails. Your criticism is pretty hypocritical.

Um, no. Let’s backtrack: Senith sends an IRC log to St. TwisTer (patron saint of honesty, nobility and dupe bugz) in which GM Ironwill makes an ass of himself. GM Ironwill is then busted back down to… well, something else (rumor has it he soldiers on as a regular shard GM under a new alias). Pretty standard stuff, we see it pretty much on a weekly basis.

Here’s the good part. Senith then wonders why no one at OSI likes him any more. He feels left out of the “elite” (that he himself refers to in reverential tones in the chat log – and for the record, I think Ironwill was 100% dead smack right on in his assessment of those idiots) on the Test Center. He sends more email to Twister, complaining about how UO sucks now because no one listens to him.

He turns his domain (destard.com) into some sort of weird plot to overthrow Origin’s ownership of UO (You know, I really wish I was making all this up) and posts as much confidential material as he can lay hands on (which isn’t much, basically the counselor’s guidebook and some ways in which counselors and GMs can appear to take damage in game). St. TwisTer eats it up.

Two days later he posts a weird montage of a smurf ascending to heaven, says it was all a test and a joke and none of us got it, and that he had “ascended beyond all that now”.

On Earth, we would have never heard from him again. But alas, we live on Bizarro Earth, and Senith (now (ex)Senith) keeps popping up, posting bitchy screeds on the Test Center message base every so often, and, as we’ve seen today, sending me addled email every time his name appears. I’m sure I’ll get another one in about ten minutes or so.

But I’m the one who needs to let it go. Um, OK.

YOU KNOW YOU CAN’T GET ENOUGH OF (EX)SENITH. IT’S LIKE A CAR WRECK. YOU CAN’T LOOK AWAY. YOU JUST CAN’T. [Author: wirehead]

(Ex)Senith writes:

“I linked to the first Senith story since there is a good chance that someone who has not religiously followed this site and/or the UO community for the past 6 months has no earthly idea who now ex-Senith is.”

Why? What is it exactly that makes you think this needs to be something that returns to the public consciousness… you can’t just let it go, and let it lie?

I can’t let it go? – Lum

“I am married. For all of you with a clue, I’m sorry that I have to spell this all out, but as I said, we obviously need to make some time for the slow readers to catch up.”

I never made any indication that you weren’t married. Congratulations, salutations, and whoopedy-do for you. I’m sure your wife loves the fact a large portion of your life is centered around an imaginary world in which you insult people to make yourself look better.

Yes, she likes my site, thank you for asking.

However, unlike you pretend, you had a number of posts that were a little less than professional in reference to Miss MOI. For our slow readers, as you so eloquently put it, I’ll just point to your archives, and let you assess what was said yourself.

It’s called humor. Look it up.

“Occasionally I will use foul language. If you don’t like it, fuck off.”

Once again, due to our poor education system, something went wrong. You seemed to miss the fact this comment was made about what Iron Will said in reference to the development team, the support staff and the player base in general, and had nothing to do with anything you said. It seems your egotism has you centered on yourself once again.

Huh? This is one of those paragraphs you have to be on drugs to understand, I think.

I have no problem with vulgarity; I have a problem with someone in charge of the volunteer program callously insulting every single person associated with the game he was hired to support. Can you follow that, or do I need to spell out on the chalk board for you?

BURN IRONWILL! SOAK HIM IN FLAMING ACID! HAVE WEASELS CHEW OUT HIS EYES! Is that better?

“I thought being labelled a Celebrity by Stratics was such a joke…”

I’m sure the folks at Stratics who supported you would like to hear this one. Glad to see you take the people who make you what you are and kick them in the face.

Actually if you read the comments on the first story, they did enjoy reading that one.

“Just like the first time ex-Senith was a news story, I’ve spent WAY too much time on this.”

And yet, even though you’ve spent way too much time on it, you continue to use my former alias as a punchline. Is it just me, or are you struggling for new material?

Naw, it just plops in my mailbox right regularly.

“All this site is, is a long drawn out screed of my opinion.”

You’ve stated your opinion on this issue, time and time again. Don’t you think you’ve beaten the dead horse six times too many?

If you’d like to continue the debate, I’m here on base until tomorrow morning. Or, if you’re scared of losing face in front of your “posse”, feel free to disregard this letter.

-“Ex-Senith”

MORE REAL UO2 NEWS NOT TECHNICALLY ON THIS SITE [Author: wirehead]

CNet Gamecenter got an interview with Starr Long, UO2 producer digitized for posterity as “Blackthorne” in UO1. And I bet if he knew how many times he’d be depicted in lame screenshot comics having sex with Richard Garriott’s character, he’d have passed.

Dr. TwisTer has what is supposedly the plot line for UO2. All I have to say is that if it’s true, I hope Mythos Online is halfway decent.

OY VEY, YOU GET SOMEONE A DATE, AND THIS IS THE THANKS YOU GET. [Author: wirehead]

Got this note this morning. Got some comments afterward. BOY do I have comments afterward.

===

Subject: A Reply You Won’t Reply To

Just a suggestion…

You may want to stop using six month old stories in attempts to garner attention for yourself.

It’s beginning to look desperate.

I haven’t done anything that needs mention in months, and it’s kind of disturbing you still cling to MY mistake as the big fallacy, rather than the other side of the incident. Maybe all that fantasizing about LadyMOI has gone to your head, but if you remember
correctly, I wasn’t the one insulting everyone involved with the game you’re so obsessed with.

I’m just the one that decided other people needed to hear about it, just like you do, every time you post something controversial or derogatory about someone else. If I shot off a long string of obscenities at you, more than likely you’d post it on your page and pass me off as another fanatic disillusioned with his place in UO subculture. But no one would brand you as the bad guy; no, they’d offer you a Celebrity Chat on Stratics, post a link to you page on every subsite they own, and make sure to kiss your ass every opportunity they get.

But should I expect a negative celebrity to attempt to see a different side of his narrow opinion? No, I don’t think so…

So I’ll leave you to continue to dredge up old news in an attempt to give yourself that much longer in the UO limelight. I just hope when the karma comes around (no, I’m not talking about something you get from killing a data string in a video game), your name isn’t continually dragged through the mud to make other people come out on top.

-“Senith” (and no, I don’t use this name anymore)

==

OK. I think I understand about 75% of this letter (I’d understand more but I’m off the drugs now).

First. Using Senith as Durga’s Dream Date was a joke. No one seriously expected to win a Dream Date with Durga (and yes, I keep repeating that phrase because I’m fond of the alliteration), thus I chose the most infamous of the ex-smurfs, ex-Senith. It was humor. It should not require this much explanation, but obviously some people are somewhat slow. (I blame our educational system.)

Second. I was not “recycling a six-month old story in a desperate attempt to garner attention for myself.” I linked to the first Senith story since there is a good chance that someone who has not religiously followed this site and/or the UO community for the past 6 months has no earthly idea who now ex-Senith is. Reading anything else into that is, um, pretty damned obsessive (or at a minimum self-indulgent).

Third: I don’t fantasize about LadyMOI, save that she send me more dirt on UO2. Let’s get one thing real clear for the slow readers (I’ll wait while you catch up – it’s hard reading with your lips moving, I understand) — I am married. Happily. LadyMOI lives in another state. Unlike most of you, I understand that these two things (well, pretty much either one independently of each other) preclude any sort of relationship. I also am under no illusions that LadyMOI has any interest in me other then gaining good publicity for her company. That’s what she does. For a living. Professionally. As in “working relationship”. As in “you don’t hit on women you work with, you mo-ron”. For all of you with a clue, I’m sorry that I have to spell this all out, but as I said, we obviously need to make some time for the slow readers to catch up.

Fourth: Regarding “shooting off long strings of obscenities.” Ultima Online is a game for adults. It is rated “M”. That means Mature (yet another in those long series of ironies I enjoy about this game). This website is also for adults. Occasionally I will use foul language. If you don’t like it, fuck off.

Fifth: “But no one would brand you as the bad guy; no, they’d offer you a Celebrity Chat on Stratics, post a link to you page on every subsite they own, and make sure to kiss your ass every opportunity they get.”. I thought being labelled a Celebrity by Stratics was such a joke, I made references to my transformation to a Puff Daddy-esque monstrosity for MONTHS. And if you don’t believe me, ask my posse; they’ve been told to agree with anything I say. And, as regular readers of this site have undoubtably picked up on, I publish flames such as this far more often than ass-kissing.

Sixth: Just like the first time ex-Senith was a news story, I’ve spent WAY too much time on this. Just remember this – I don’t make any money off this site, I don’t really keep track of how many people show up, and I couldn’t care less what you think. All this site is, is a long drawn out screed of my opinion. If you don’t like it, well, you know, it’s a big Internet out there, and I’m sure you can find other sites to go to. I suggest this one.