Managing Fan Expectations - An Interview with Vanguard Founder Brad McQuaid
ItÂs inevitable--as any MMOG nears launch, excitement builds to a fever
pitch and message boards, from official forums to fansites to network
communities like Ten Ton Hammer, buzz with activity. But hype for a
game about to launch can lead to an almost inevitable crash when
expectations meet reality. Brad McQuaid, the man behind EverQuest and
Vanguard: Saga of Heroes, has learned a thing or two, sometimes the
hard way, about keeping fan expectations in check. In one of the first
interviews with him since the launch of Vanguard, McQuaid speaks
candidly about fan expectations, and shares his thoughts about how to
keep them in line.
In retrospect he offers this advice to developers: ÂI think itÂs very important to hype only features that you are positive will make it into the game. As development progresses one becomes surer of what will and will not make it into the released game. So, over time, you can reveal more and more about the game with confidence. That said, I think a certain degree of fan-generated over-hype is inevitable.Â
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