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Author Topic: Worst Rpg Company  (Read 4753 times)

Bruwulf

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Re: Worst Rpg Company
« Reply #15 on: January 16, 2023, 05:39:43 PM »
I'll nominate Peterson Games for having several unfulfilled kickstarters, all of which have dragged on for years, then they send these BS announcements just stretching things out further without ever responding to actual queries about progress.  At this point, they should just declare bankruptcy and/or shut down rather than continue the sham that they will actually finish anything.  Some of these are board games so that might not count for purposes of the discussion, however.

I backed Far West over ten years ago. GMS is still updating his kickstarter campaign saying "Soon". His most recent "Really soon nao guys, I super-promise this time!" was back in November.

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Re: Worst Rpg Company
« Reply #16 on: January 16, 2023, 05:47:13 PM »
There's a gotcha in the caveat, 'how they treat their fans'.  Evil Hat's fans are I'm sure quite on board with their ecstatic virtue signalling their hate for the man whose work they pilfered to sell their game, so technically they aren't treating their fans poorly.  I think they're shitty people who made a garbage game system, but I'm not their fan, and they probably hope I die in a fire.  Games Workshop really deserves the crown for abusing their fans relentlessly, I don't think any other tabletop gaming company comes close, though like Yabba pointed out they aren't directly making any RPG at the moment.  Wizards?  Ehhhhhhhhh.  Maybe?  Like Evil Hat I think they've been churning out garbage for years now, but I'm not sure that in and of itself counts as abusive to the fans.  The whole OGL debacle indirectly abuses fans by curtailing the creators in the market that might make good compatible things, but also isn't direct fan abuse.  Palladium in the past and TSR would both be strong contenders since they'd go out of their way to threaten fan content with lawyers, though I haven't heard of Palladium doing it recently and TSR is gone, so.

That indian guy who made the Wakanda for indians RPG and then demanded that white people buy copies to support him while also decrying them playing it, I think I'd probably vote for him.  Dude was actively talking down to his fanbase of white saviors buying his shit entirely because it was indian, so I think he counts.  Oh, also David Hill, since I think he ran a bunch of kickstarters and ran with the money.

MeganovaStella

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Re: Worst Rpg Company
« Reply #17 on: January 16, 2023, 06:07:49 PM »
what's the deal with evil hat?

jhkim

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Re: Worst Rpg Company
« Reply #18 on: January 16, 2023, 09:42:47 PM »
There's a gotcha in the caveat, 'how they treat their fans'.  Evil Hat's fans are I'm sure quite on board with their ecstatic virtue signalling their hate for the man whose work they pilfered to sell their game, so technically they aren't treating their fans poorly.  I think they're shitty people who made a garbage game system, but I'm not their fan, and they probably hope I die in a fire.  Games Workshop really deserves the crown for abusing their fans relentlessly, I don't think any other tabletop gaming company comes close, though like Yabba pointed out they aren't directly making any RPG at the moment.  Wizards?  Ehhhhhhhhh.  Maybe?  Like Evil Hat I think they've been churning out garbage for years now, but I'm not sure that in and of itself counts as abusive to the fans.  The whole OGL debacle indirectly abuses fans by curtailing the creators in the market that might make good compatible things, but also isn't direct fan abuse.  Palladium in the past and TSR would both be strong contenders since they'd go out of their way to threaten fan content with lawyers, though I haven't heard of Palladium doing it recently and TSR is gone, so.

That indian guy who made the Wakanda for indians RPG and then demanded that white people buy copies to support him while also decrying them playing it, I think I'd probably vote for him.  Dude was actively talking down to his fanbase of white saviors buying his shit entirely because it was indian, so I think he counts.  Oh, also David Hill, since I think he ran a bunch of kickstarters and ran with the money.

I think there's a huge difference between "said mean things on the Internet" compared to actions like unethically taking people's money, breaking contracts, or spurious lawsuits or cease and desist letters.

De-authorizing the OGL v1.0a is highly unethical since WotC told its fans that it was permanent in their own FAQ, and many fans created content on that basis. Similar for TSR and Palladium sending cease and desist letters for fan content that doesn't infringe. Taking Kickstarter money without delivering is obviously unethical - like David Hill or Gareth-Michael Skarka.

Stephen Tannhauser

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Re: Worst Rpg Company
« Reply #19 on: January 16, 2023, 10:07:35 PM »
I think there's a huge difference between "said mean things on the Internet" compared to actions like unethically taking people's money, breaking contracts, or spurious lawsuits or cease and desist letters.

This is a good point. Before you can determine which current publisher is the "worst" you have to define your criteria. Based on the posts so far I would suggest the following list:

- Poor quality of actual product delivered.
- Poor reliability and speed of releasing products on promised schedules (especially if pre-funded).
- Unethical behaviour towards employees, contractors, licensees, and competitors, including unilaterally revoking content permissions for fair use in a way that would create a de facto monopoly for yourself.
- Adoption and promulgation of public moral/cultural positions with the active intent of (or at least negligent disdain about) alienating customers, thus damaging market base.
Better to keep silent and be thought a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt. -- Mark Twain

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Re: Worst Rpg Company
« Reply #20 on: January 16, 2023, 11:54:00 PM »
what's the deal with evil hat?

They invited themselves to the culture war without being asked.  They released a Lovecraft setting and spent at least one full page of the book excoriating the man whose work they'd taken to sell for money.  Then a rumor came out that the Lovecraft setting involved time traveling agents fighting Cthulhu because it was actually written to be a Terminator setting but they couldn't get the rights to it, so instead they started a kickstarter for Lovecraft fans and pooped out their rebranded Terminator book to the people who'd handed them money and also took a dump on Lovecraft in the process.  Many Lovecraft fans were not fans of having been bilked out of their money for a garbage book that wasted ink on denouncing the guy who was the reason they'd paid for the book, and were subsequently called fascists and such for having a problem with it.  That's basically par for the course with the Evil Hat people.

Additionally from a personal perspective, FATE is a complete trash system that basically amounts to flipping a coin and then the GM just makes up whatever shit they feel like regardless of the result, anyone responsible for it is bad and should feel bad.

Stephen Tannhauser

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Re: Worst Rpg Company
« Reply #21 on: January 17, 2023, 12:33:05 AM »
Then a rumor came out that the Lovecraft setting involved time traveling agents fighting Cthulhu because it was actually written to be a Terminator setting but (Evil Hat) couldn't get the rights to it, so instead they started a kickstarter for Lovecraft fans and pooped out their rebranded Terminator book to the people who'd handed them money and also took a dump on Lovecraft in the process.

Was this ever confirmed, or is it still just rumoured?  Not that spending a whole page telling people why they shouldn't like what they just paid you money to get isn't a bonehead move in itself -- in any industry other than modern fandom, that is -- but I have a firm policy of not believing any rumour until it's proven, having been the victim of one as a kid.
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Effete

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Re: Worst Rpg Company
« Reply #22 on: January 17, 2023, 12:39:56 AM »
what's the deal with evil hat?

They invited themselves to the culture war without being asked.  They released a Lovecraft setting and spent at least one full page of the book excoriating the man whose work they'd taken to sell for money.  Then a rumor came out that the Lovecraft setting involved time traveling agents fighting Cthulhu because it was actually written to be a Terminator setting but they couldn't get the rights to it, so instead they started a kickstarter for Lovecraft fans and pooped out their rebranded Terminator book to the people who'd handed them money and also took a dump on Lovecraft in the process.  Many Lovecraft fans were not fans of having been bilked out of their money for a garbage book that wasted ink on denouncing the guy who was the reason they'd paid for the book, and were subsequently called fascists and such for having a problem with it.  That's basically par for the course with the Evil Hat people.

Additionally from a personal perspective, FATE is a complete trash system that basically amounts to flipping a coin and then the GM just makes up whatever shit they feel like regardless of the result, anyone responsible for it is bad and should feel bad.

Don't forget pro-actively launching campaigns to get books pulled off of DTRPG because of their own moral delusions.

jhkim

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Re: Worst Rpg Company
« Reply #23 on: January 17, 2023, 02:30:44 AM »
Then a rumor came out that the Lovecraft setting involved time traveling agents fighting Cthulhu because it was actually written to be a Terminator setting but (Evil Hat) couldn't get the rights to it, so instead they started a kickstarter for Lovecraft fans and pooped out their rebranded Terminator book to the people who'd handed them money and also took a dump on Lovecraft in the process.

Was this ever confirmed, or is it still just rumoured?  Not that spending a whole page telling people why they shouldn't like what they just paid you money to get isn't a bonehead move in itself -- in any industry other than modern fandom, that is -- but I have a firm policy of not believing any rumour until it's proven, having been the victim of one as a kid.

This is about the "FATE of Cthulhu", right? I don't have the book itself and I don't know the insider history of its writing, but it was clearly advertised as being about time-traveling agents a la Terminator. This was the Kickstarter description:

Quote
You are those one-way travelers from a dark future and their crucial allies from the present day, working together to save the human race from looming apocalypse. Armed with foreknowledge of Judgment Day, you must succeed at a series of vital missions aimed at restoring hope to the future.

But the clock is ticking. The corrupting influence of the Great Old Ones is sure to affect you before the end, twisting you slowly and inexorably into something alien and unrecognizable.
Quote
The idea for Fate of Cthulhu started with a simple question: what if Cthulhu operated like Skynet? In this game you'll face down Mythos-style threats with Terminator-style action and adventure, whether as a present-day Sarah Connor type, or an agent from the future already facing the creeping effects of corruption. This is Lovecraftian roleplaying made new again, with time-traveling operatives from a future apocalypse journeying back to the present day to warn others of the coming danger (and recruit them) to try to set the timeline on a new and hopefully better course.

So it does seem to be a Terminator-inspired concept, and maybe it was initially developed as a straight Terminator adaptation, but it also seems clearly advertised as such.

migo

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Re: Worst Rpg Company
« Reply #24 on: January 17, 2023, 05:36:29 AM »
what's the deal with evil hat?

They invited themselves to the culture war without being asked.  They released a Lovecraft setting and spent at least one full page of the book excoriating the man whose work they'd taken to sell for money.  Then a rumor came out that the Lovecraft setting involved time traveling agents fighting Cthulhu because it was actually written to be a Terminator setting but they couldn't get the rights to it, so instead they started a kickstarter for Lovecraft fans and pooped out their rebranded Terminator book to the people who'd handed them money and also took a dump on Lovecraft in the process.  Many Lovecraft fans were not fans of having been bilked out of their money for a garbage book that wasted ink on denouncing the guy who was the reason they'd paid for the book, and were subsequently called fascists and such for having a problem with it.  That's basically par for the course with the Evil Hat people.

Additionally from a personal perspective, FATE is a complete trash system that basically amounts to flipping a coin and then the GM just makes up whatever shit they feel like regardless of the result, anyone responsible for it is bad and should feel bad.

Don't forget pro-actively launching campaigns to get books pulled off of DTRPG because of their own moral delusions.

Yes this makes Evil Hat one of the worst companies for the hobby as a whole, even if they're not going after their fans. That being said, they probably lost a number of fans, from before they really showed themselves to be as Evil as their company name indicates. So that probably can be counted as being shit to fans.


Rob Necronomicon

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Re: Worst Rpg Company
« Reply #25 on: January 17, 2023, 06:25:20 AM »
Evil Hat. They make great games but are pretty all-around nasty (IMO).

And that co. that makes Zweihander.
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Armchair Gamer

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Re: Worst Rpg Company
« Reply #26 on: January 17, 2023, 08:15:58 AM »
what's the deal with evil hat?

  They strongly imply/outright state that there are ideological criteria for playing some of their games, and that those who fall short are morally defective. See p. 9 of the free preview for Thirsty Sword Lesbians on DTRPG.

Trond

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Re: Worst Rpg Company
« Reply #27 on: January 17, 2023, 08:44:38 AM »
Evil Hat. They make great games but are pretty all-around nasty (IMO).

And that co. that makes Zweihander.

 I remember a lot of controversy about Zweihander, but no details, what was that about?

Rob Necronomicon

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Re: Worst Rpg Company
« Reply #28 on: January 17, 2023, 08:51:37 AM »
Evil Hat. They make great games but are pretty all-around nasty (IMO).

And that co. that makes Zweihander.

 I remember a lot of controversy about Zweihander, but no details, what was that about?

It's going back a bit... but all the alleged legal shit he threatened and his sock puppet accounts, etc.
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Persimmon

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Re: Worst Rpg Company
« Reply #29 on: January 17, 2023, 09:00:20 AM »
In the case of Zweihander, it's really just Daniel Fox personally, right?  He was also involved in taking down that site with all the old out of print stuff for copyright reasons which many found hypocritical due to the origins of his own game being a rip-off of Warhammer.