This tale is part QA and part Game Support, the two overlap more than most would. I worked for a well known company with an extremely well known AAA title. New content was coming out and part of this was a series of quests to end all quests. There were flashbacks, shape-shifting, new weapons and swimming! All kinds of cool mechanics for the players to use. Dev sang its praises for weeks and weeks! This is awesome, new, exciting, different, and creative and about nine other suitable adjectives.
QA got a hold of it and it was abhorrent. This shit doesn’t work. It will never work. At least not with any scripting known to man. I saw build after build after build and it all ended the same way. Dev didn’t care. There were town hall meetings specifically about these few bits of content. We begged and pleaded and Dev still didn’t care. Come hell or high water, this is going live.
And it did. And it broke. Hard. When I say hard I mean this could and did severely impede a player’s gaming experience for days, sometimes WEEKS. Players screamed about it and they were right to do so. This content wasn’t ready, it wasn’t on the same street as ready. Game Support had excel sheets and console commands and all manner of tools to try and put a band-aid on things.
It never was fixed. Players just stopped doing those quests. Through an internal forum, an open letter was sent to Dev from both QA and Game Support. The following is the basic idea:
XXXX is pretty cool. This content is more than cool. It’s awesome, new, exciting, different, and creative. Let’s never do this fucking shit again. XOXO, Everybody”
We never did get a reply.