Whenever I look at any game’s online community, be it official forums, reddit, twitter, or some other form of social media, I’ll often see fans demanding the developers to tell them certain common things. I invariably chuckle and shake my head because I know that the devs are almost certain not to respond. Still, I see the same demands made over and over, as if this time will be the exception. So here’s a list of some of the responses you’ll (probably) never get from a developer:
1. Badmouthing or blaming a current business partner. That publisher you love to blame for everything you perceive is wrong with the game? Yeah, we work with/for them and need to maintain a good working relationship. Stabbing them in the back is very bad for business.
2. Anything financial. A lot of community members like to pretend they know the financial status of the game, and use that to support that their preferences are the right preferences. I’ve never seen a community member anywhere close to being correct with conjectures about how well a studio or game is doing financially. We’re not going to give anyone outside the company that sort of information just to prove you wrong. Also, VGChartz is definitely not a reliable source.
3. Stuff that hasn’t been announced yet. If we haven’t announced it yet, we can’t talk about it. We all know that certain games and sequels are almost certainly in development. We still aren’t allowed to talk about it until they’ve been announced.
4. Information scheduled for release elsewhere. No, we cannot talk about that upcoming feature because we’re still working on the art and animations for it and can’t show it off yet, so we’ll wait until we can in order to get more marketing buzz out of it. Or, alternatively, we’ve already done an interview with a gaming blog about it that’s scheduled to go live in a month and we can’t break that agreement or they’ll sue us for breach of contract. Or maybe it’s part of our big batch of E3/Gamescom/TGS/PAX/whatever announcements that we’ll use to promote the game.
5. Here’s what we are prototyping/thinking about doing. If we talk about something that hasn’t been approved yet (i.e. could be cut) we’ll inevitably get called liars if it does get cut. Most of the time, most such things get cut. You’ll get to see it if/when we have something polished-looking to show. Until then, we can’t acknowledge its existence.
6. No, we will never do that. Never say never, even if the real answer actually is “No, we will never do that.” We generally only plan for a year or two in the future anyway. None of us know what will happen after that.
7. [Some game that we made] is garbage and we never should have made it. We’re sorry you didn’t like it, but that doesn’t mean it has no redeeming qualities or that we shouldn’t be proud of what we’ve accomplished. Even if you didn’t like it, some people out there did. It still represents years of our collective lives spent working and doing our best.