Tuesday 2 February 2016

Please read: Open letter to EA and Firemonkeys

I just want to bring this to your attention. It describes the feelings I have about the Sims Freeplay quite accurately.

The original can be found here: https://sfpguide.de/sims-freeplay/open-letter-to-firemonkeys-the-developers-of-sims-freeplay-and-ea-the-mainly-responsible-company/

Geschrieben von Akshaya am Dienstag, 02. Februar 2016, 12:18 Uhr

Dear Amanda Schofield,

Dear Firemonkeys,

Dear EA whoeverisresponsibleforthisgame,

let me start right away with this statement:

You, the Firemonkeys, who are responsible for all the cute animations and actions, are so incredibly amazing and it's great fun to watch what you created, every single time. Look at the dancers, the harlequin in the castle and so many other things. It's awesome to see what you can create. And I'm so sorry for you, that you waste your talent for such a greedy company like EA.

You, the Support Team of the Firemonkeys, do a great job, no question about it. And you, the actual Programmers, at least try to make it right. I honor that, too.

But, let me say this:

I'm fed up. I have had it. I'm sick to death with your greediness, with your avarice for money and brassiness with this game. The whole game is turning more and more into a total rip-off.

Every single thing in this game actually called "free play" is designed to pull our money out of our pockets. Every. Fucking. Thing. Let's start at the beginning of this game. Or, wait, let me introduce myself first:

My name is Petra Stelter, my Nickname is Akshaya for a very long time now. I'm playing SFP since it hit the market, December 2011. And I was so in love, it was such a gorgeous game. I've played on iPad, a gift of my then-to-be husband. I lost my game twice, in the early years. There was no cloud to save the game, there were loads of bugs, so... I lost my beloved little family in there two times. And I stopped playing for a while.

When I started over in Spring 2013, hoping for the better, you added loads of stuff, fixed quite a few bugs, but added so many more bugs and glitches, that I almost lost my game again. And, you started to get greedy. It was in Summer 2013, when the Neighbors Update came out and you added SP and shortly after that you added the Millionaires Island. Oops, sorry, it's Mystery Island.

So I started to blog about it. In German. It's not a language you know best, I know, that's why I'm writing in English. I wrote what I felt - the Island with it's Monuments was a rip-off. And I took the bait - I payed about 500 Euros, that's more than 750 Australian Dollars. I paid it because I wanted to finish the Monuments and stuff like that, I paid it because the LP Lotus was gambling, and I took medicine that made me fall for gambling. I wish I could sue you because of that, but on what grounds? So I took it as "learnt it the hard way".

Shortly after that you put death into the game, February 2014, two years ago. Yes, I need to talk about it AGAIN. You need to hear it AGAIN. This particular update is called by us players Death Update or Todesupdate in German, not Life Deams and Legacies. Because it's simply not about Life Dreams, it's about getting rid of our Sims to earn orbs. Sim-Deaths for a new venue. Great idea. I wrote my second blog article. And after that I wrote about every single update until now.

You know, meanwhile I've got quite known in the German SFP community, I have a lot readers per day, thousands come to me for help in quests or for getting legal tips and tricks on how to play the game, how to be able to accomplish your quests and events. I hear loads of complaints about how hard it actually is to reach goals in this game, to be able to build stuff, to make our Sims a nice home (before they die anyway to get new venues). I tried to start a new game just to see if it's really that hard and yes, indeed, it is.

You started to develop the game far away from what the players actually want, despite all the bright and shiny surveys you do. Funny, eh? You tried to do both, earning money and do what the players want, and you failed big times.

Your best coup was to invent the VIP points. The biggest rip-off of all times. I'm not rewarded, even if I already paid hundreds and hundreds of €. VIP only counts for NEW stuff one is buying. And just do the maths: it's 2.400€ to hit VIP level 15 with it's 12.000 VIP Points.

Now, let me ask you: Are you serious about that? Really, are you? I think maybe this Chemtrail stuff is in Australia very intense, it affects the pot you're smoking and the water you make your tea with. Are you REALLY thinking one single player would pay more for a buggy mobile game than for the entire device the game's running on? You must be crazy, and not in a nice way.

Or are you doing this just to seek for the hackers or those players who let their games be hacked, to punish them or reset their games?

And what about the bugs? After one whole year you finally managed to bring back the neighbors. Well done, well done. But there are so many bad bugs in the game, starting with graphical glitches and mean bugs like the missing puppy. I don't believe you, when you say only the support can help. I bet it's possible to help with an OTA update, you just wanted to punish the hackers with this behavior.

So, let's see if I forgot a thing... yes! You said, Amanda, you personally said on video publicly, that you cannot set the Sim limit higher than 34 in total or 4 Sims per lot. Still it's possible to expand the limits - no, I'm not talking about illegal stuff, I'm talking about VIP. It's possible to have 39 Sims in total and 6 Sims on a lot, if you're willing to pay THOUSANDS OF EUROS. So you're a liar. A greedy liar.

And like I said. I'm fed up with it. I don't know yet what to do. But I know loads of people, not only in the German community, but also all over the world. And we all are fed up. There are a few ways how to react.

One was this letter. I hope you start to think about it. Or maybe you won't, because the game maybe will not be there for long and a new game is coming up. Who knows. If there's a new game, I hope you'll make it better. For the players who pay your loan.

Kind, or maybe not so kind regards,

Akshaya (Petra Stelter)

P.S.: if you want to contact me, since this is a no-comment-blog-thingy, you can use this contact form to eMail me. Thanks.


Now for my own thoughts on the matter:
This is exactly how I feel about Sims Freeplay too.
Greed, greed, greed into insane amounts!

We've been insulted so many times and now they're doing it again, big time!

Misery Island was a nightmare, not only for the statues, but also the bugs they added. (Todd's town bug still happens every not and then).

"Death won't be a currency" Matt said at some point, or maybe it was Amanda. Yet why are we paying with orbs, being the result of many deaths?

More bugs and few fixes. A year ago Android players were presented with a cut down in neighbours, did they fix it? No, "we're investigating the issue". They decided to keep it that way and add Google Play Games for Android players half a year down the line. (
Finally, ONE WHOLE YEAR LATER! they fixed it, after breaking it on iOS too.)

The numerous costly increases. Lucky spins were moved to rows, only to find out you'll end up paying tons more. Task skipping suddenly doubled (10 LPs WTF?).

And then came VIP. A little reward for spending money, not taking into account anything long time player spent. Then they upped it, making it suddenly more expensive than any other Sims game in the series. (Which you get to keep and play even if EA pulls the plug on it.)

And now? As Petra pointed out, close to €/$ 2500 to reach level 15? Blooming freaking flipping fracking blinking INSANE!

(Oh and while I'm at it... FIVE currencies for a one-off event -and hey, construct-o-coins are back too- and crazy amounts of SPs needed to complete related tasks? Seriously? Still not getting enough money out of us players, EA/FM?)

I can buy a really really nice gaming rig for that kind of money, which I actually own and can keep for the coming years and I don't have to worry when they might snatch it away from me.

EA, Firemonkeys, you lost me completely. I can not stand behind this kind of greed, I don't wish to encourage you, so I won't spend any money on any EA product from now on.

Catherina Perturbee