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A new developer diary was released for FireFall, the upcoming free-to-play MMO from Red 5 Studios, and the developers talk directly to gamers about the changes they made based on gamer feedback. That's right gamer feedback...not focus testing, not demographic monitoring and not market calculations.
All too often we've seen big-budget games fall to the wayside because they're way too focused on recouping funds and posting profits at the highest margins possible. This means that the game isn't being designed to be a fun game but it's being designed to appeal to the broadest market possible to make as much money as possible. While some gamers don't mind a dumb-downed, Hollywood-blockbuster wannabe whenever a major title is announced, the majority of the core gaming community never dig that sort of stuff, hence why many AAA titles are long forgotten about shortly after their release (i.e,. Bodycount, Syndicate, Aliens Vs Predator, Dark Void, etc.)
Red 5 has decided to go in a completely different direction, they've decided that game will not be left up to marketers and advertisers to dictate what content should be included or how the game should play, instead they're bringing it down a notch and taking it back to gamers and using core-gamer feedback to implement changes into the game. Check it out.
Mad respect for Red 5.
To be completely honest I was just thinking about FireFall and how I wasn't that excited about it anymore. I started thinking of it as being passé and a bit dull. However, the video above reinvigorates my excitement for the game because it's no longer just a typical loot-and-grind game, but it's a skill-based, loot-based, shooter-based, customization-based, exploration-based MMO that's being sculpted around the gamer's experience.
I also love the fact that Red 5 loves the game enough to see it shape and evolve with the community. The studio's enthusiasm and the community's positive reaction makes me excited to see how the game will turn out when it finally releases.
It's too bad other studios don't have the leniency to interact with the gaming community like Red 5 is doing right now with FireFall. All the contracts, obligations and Metacritic scores really put a damper on how great some games could be. In Red 5's case, it's definitely some great stuff.
You can learn more about the upcoming free-to-play MMO by paying a visit to the Official Website.