Participating in day one of the Early Access release for H1Z1 had been a bumpy ride so far. There were release delays, login issues, and plenty of bugs, glitches, and problems on top of that. I was expecting all of the above, having participated in Sony Online Entertainment's last Alpha release. Thanks to the first few days of Landmark, I was pretty prepared for this. That, and I also took the time to read the forums, understand the product and be fully aware of what I was getting myself into (and spending my money on).
I honestly believe this launch went much more smoothly than the Landmark Alpha launch.
I'm pretty sure that's because H1Z1 isn't sitting on top of brand-new voxel-world technology, but that's just my own opinion. Either way, H1Z1 felt more solid and much more stable out of the gate than Landmark once the servers finally came up. I've only been in for a couple hours, but it has been much more tolerable and enjoyable than I what I remember from my first foray in SOE's voxel-based MMO-creator: Landmark.
Interestingly enough, that opinion is an extremely tiny minority - at least if you go into the H1Z1 subreddit.
Forums of the Post-Apocalypse
I honestly haven't had much experience with reddit. I hadn't heard many good things about it, and the few first-hand experiences I've had have largely felt like a very closed-minded approach to discussion and debate. It's a community that will rip you to shreds fairly quickly if you're not extremely careful with your words; and even if you do manage to post something intelligent and insightful the community can (and will) still tear you apart if they don't like what you're saying.
When I went into the H1Z1 subreddit, that previous opinion completely changed forever because...
Those forums are an absolute madhouse.
Players (or perhaps I should clarify and say "commenters" since there is no telling who is actually playing and who isn't) are raging about weapons and ammunition being included in the loot options of the store-bought Air-drops. Every other post is headlined with something along the lines of "Pay to Win" or "SOE Lies", in probably the biggest open flame-fest I've seen since I browsed the ArcheAge forums after they implemented sweeping anti-cheat measures.
It's just shocking.
I mean, just take a moment and actually consider a few things. Unlike ArcheAge, H1Z1 is in an early-access Alpha state (for the uneducated or willingly-ignorant, that means pre-OpenBeta and even pre-ClosedBeta). H1Z1 is literally in its earliest playable state. That means nothing is finalized. Nothing is balanced yet. Nothing is working as intended... yet. It is literally our very first peek into the bare-bones skeleton framework of the future game that H1Z1 is meant to be - which is an analogy that only works if you imagine said skeleton in a roughly arranged pattern on the ground, put together from a previous pile of bones. It's not going to look right, and therefore it shouldn't feel right either.
If it did, then it probably would need to be called a Closed-Beta at the very least - but it's not. It's an Alpha-Client.
I almost get the feeling that the majority of the Airdrop-Rage population are people that have been only vaguely aware of H1Z1 as a future title from seeing highlights from SOELive. You'd think that having to wait 5+ hours on the game's Steam store page to buy it (because of launch delays) that they would have at least been able to read this:
Early Access Game
Get instant access and start playing; get involved with this game as it develops.
Note: This Early Access game is not complete and may or may not change further. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you should wait to see if the game progresses further in development. Learn more
Commenters on the game's subreddit are acting as if airdrops are currently functioning properly and as if they are already an accurate reflection of the intended final gameplay. It's absolutely ridiculous. Reading the knee-jerk reactions from day one makes me believe either this the most self-entitled generation in recorded history, or reddit-users are the most (willingly) uneducated and (happily) toxic portion of players in the entire gaming universe.
It's a painful place to visit, and if what's happening on the H1Z1 subreddit is any indication of how reddit will treat other early-access titles than I don't regret that my visits there are so few and far between. The backlash from Early Access haters is epically misguided, and the logic is almost non-existent. It's obvious proof that these consumers need to take way more responsibility and accountability for their purchases.
These are the types of people that are the reason we have blow-dryers that say "Do not operate while in the bathtub." Seriously, I had no idea there were so many people this dense. I've always believed it was one or two rare individuals that would need that much obvious help, but apparently a significant portion of the population is in dire need of it.
Perhaps the Steam store page for H1Z1 should a giant flashing text overlay saying "WARNING, THIS GAME IS INCOMPLETE AND MAY NOT FUNCTION PROPERLY!" covering the entire page every few seconds. (Somehow I still believe even this would be inadequate for some people). The whole H1Z1 subreddit experience post-launch (note: *early-access* launch), has reduced my expectations of any future gaming experience to new all-time lows. It is proof that there is a massive community of players out there that must be totally obnoxious to play beside.
Reddit has officially become the #1 bullet point on my Reasons-To-Hate-The-Internet list. The users there are giving the saying "Ignorance is Bliss" a real run for its money. Fortunately for the walking-dead that fill the reddit forums with all its stupidity, SOE has a great refund policy. All those people who feel "betrayed, lied to, and duped" can probably get their money back. Hopefully next time they'll learn to properly research before they spend.
Now if you'll excuse me, I think I need to go bash my head against a wall a few times and hopefully concuss myself into not remembering my recent visit there.
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