To CM_Hunter - a response
I saw the twitch broadcast and recall you saying you read the forum, so here goes.
Regarding 'A Sincere Apology'
There are many issues regarding the apology i could address but will keep it to just three that centre around the last debacle of the coop hwe.
An apology is meaningless in itself, whether written or verbal. It is the actions (or lack of) that go along with or follow on from the apology that is the telling part. The idiom that actions speak louder than words is very true, and has always been true, regarding apologies.
But first i will deal with your words, or rather the white elephant in the room that is missing from the apology - specifically, the new all time low act from GGS that isn't addressed in the apology at all. You knew the event was totally broke and no prizes would be given out. Yet there was a decision made not to inform us about that until a few hours from the end. And lets not pull punches here, someone effectively said 'don't tell them'. That is an executive decision, for sure. I worked in games for years and had friends in various positions up to producers and even a publisher and know that kind of decision would not come from any position lower than the rank of exec. producer.
There can be no justification for that decision, probably why you've swerved it in your 'apology', having been back in your offices for 24 hours and more GGS took the decision to remain totally silent to their user community. What conclusion to you expect us to draw from that act? It left players still playing in 'win mode', spending resources, expecting a hot fix at some point to fix the rankings (as this had happened previously) or at the very least a head's up to what was going on/or a likely outcome. You knew this as a company, so all we can conclude is that it was a money/resource grab of the most transparent kind and treated us with utter contempt - GGS must be confident that whatever they do it will not impact significantly on their user base as we're dumb enough to keep dancing to your tune no matter what you do, in short, you act with impunity. Because of all the things that have gone wrong in this game, of all the previous decisions or actions that have made the community unhappy (rightly or wrongly in your eyes), none come even close to that most morally reprehensible decision.
2. Compensation - GGS has a history of having no idea of due compensation for effort/resources used by players in broken events. So much so the majority of us have the view that you (meaning GGS in general) dont really play or know your own game, if you did your compensation packages would be very different. I will say this tho, while not remotely good enough, from a GGS perspective the compensation package cited (we haven't received it yet and im not assuming we will tbh, im still waiting for the last gold fish rescue rewards....) is 'good' by GGS standards.
However, there is a glaring omission here. I will put individual player interests aside here (altho they are just as pertinent) and just look at coops. High level/ranking coops spend tens of thousands of gold on boosters in such events as the coop hwe. One thing i do know from dealing with game support concerning gold, GGS track gold spending in great detail, they can produce a history of your gold spending. Which begs the question, when the event ended, this total non event, where no in-game 'gain' of any kind whatsoever was received by any player or coop, why did you not immediately return the used gold to the coops? A direct answer to this would be fitting and appropriate. It's certainly not the first broken event that relates to this question and deserves an answer but in this totally non event occurence, what possible reason could you have for not returning used gold? Apart from the obvious, of course, we want to keep your 'money' so you spend money to top gold back up. However, if i go the step of giving GGS the benefit of the doubt, please do state the reason why the gold has not been returned.
3. To quote - "if you saw our recent live stream you may be aware that our team is perhaps a little smaller than some of you may have expected, and so it can take a little time to fully locate and repair issues"
This is a reason, but not an excuse. If the team you now have cannot cope with the game as it is and on going events as they are, and there is every evidence that this is the case, then surely you adjust. You fix things rather than introduce new elements that just break down and/or break things that were working fine previously. You temper ambition to match what you can actually deliver, rather than what you would like to do. The owners of this game are responsible ultimately, as they may ask of the team that which is not possible, and i'm sure this is a subject of discussion between the parties on a regular basis.
However, as i stated, it cannot be used as an excuse. If i buy a pair of jeans and they fall apart, you can state the stitcher isn't up to the job, which is a reason, but not a valid excuse, and any reputable outlet will refund me the money for those jeans. When players and coops spend gold, seaweed is not a refund, not remotely, additionally, you cannot take an item and put a gold value on it yourself and say it is due compensation (eg a new snow appearance and tell me that compensates me 40k gold - it does not). Cos here's the punchline, if GGS were handing out gold refunds of equal value to those spent, then the alarm bells would surely ring, and game efficiency would be continually scrutinised and the urgency to correct errors would become paramount. And further, they would make a much more concerted effort to make sure that game elements/events were tested properly and introduced events ran smoothly and ambitions would match the game's actual ability to deliver.
But GGS doesn't, so it comes down to 'well if it goes wrong just throw some seaweed their way' - cos that costs GGS absolutely nothing at all. Nothing. At. All.
So, CM_Hunter, you end on talking about trust (which at least you acknowledge was broken by recent events.. if not before, dockyard comes to mind) and i'd calculate that to the vast majority of players there is basically 0 of that lying around here after the coop hwe. If the company are serious about trust, then they have to look far beyond, glitches and bugs, they need to look at their core values and whether they can run a game while employing morally sound business ethics towards their customers. Because recent events do not demonstrate this at all.