Here are some highlights:
- To no-one's surprise, PSS1 have now acquired the regional rights to the SOE games they didn't take in the first raid. That means Vanguard (which we knew), Everquest (which we were told they didn't want), Bullet Run (about which no-one cares) and Wizardry (which isn't finished yet). If you thought at least a few of your options were still open, well you can forget that.
- PSS1 has partnered with a French Television station, TF1. At least I've heard of it, unlike PSS1. No-one outside France cares.
- The cost of an EQ2 subscription in the U.K. will rise under PSS1's stewardship by 20%. That's actually only £2.00 a month so it's no deal-breaker, but what the justification for it might be, other than profiteering, I can't imagine.
- The DCUO conversion hasn't gone smoothly, particularly in respect of customer service. Is anyone surprised?
- There are some potential security issues with how PSS1 store account information. Where have I heard that before?
And then we come to:
"Each User may only create one Account."
Now that's a deal-breaker. SOE MMOs have always not just allowed but encouraged the creation of multiple accounts. Multi-boxing is a tradition that goes back almost as far as the creation of Everquest itself.
Could it get any worse? Oh, yes. It seems that "User" in this context could be defined as IP Address. If so, that doesn't just mean no multi-boxing, it means only one person per household. No families. No siblings. No couples. No flatmates. Not if they share the same internet connection, anyway.
In our house we have half a dozen SOE accounts between us and sometimes all of them are logged in at once. No more of that. Instead, back we go to late 1999, when we took turns, one of us playing EQ while the other watched. At least we won't be on dial-up.
Oh, I don't suppose it will come to that. There are noises being made about how SOE and PSS1 " understand your concerns and are working hard to address them". Yes, you keep saying that, but then every time you reach some half-hearted compromise on one issue, up pops something else that was entirely predictable only you apparently weren't able to predict it and everyone waves their hands in the air and wails " it wasn’t as simple as we initially thought".
Just over a week from now I will be playing Guild Wars 2. After that, all things being equal, I might be playing The Secret World, City of Steam, WildStar, Otherland, Rift's Storm Legion expansion and who knows what else. It's not as though all my dragon eggs are in the same Kerran basket. But there aren't any MMOs quite like EQ, EQ2 and Vanguard and there aren't any characters like the ones I have there. Even if I'm off enjoying myself somewhere else I want to know my characters are in safe hands.
And they're not, now, are they?